Thu | Jun 17, 2021

Student beggars flood streets in summer

Published:Saturday | July 6, 2019 | 12:22 AM


The good news is that schools are out, so the traffic to get in and around Kingston has been, for the most part, manageable. The bad news, however, is that it seems as though some children have taken up begging and window wiping as their means of summer employment.

Now, do not get me wrong. I am all for children having responsibilities during the summer as I believe it teaches them values that will only add positively to their lives in the long run.

I am, however, against children who appear to be underage on the roads begging at every car that passes by. I am also against adults exploiting kids for their own benefit and, most of all, I am against added harassment on the roads as I approach a stop light.

Indeed, many women around Kingston can agree that they have been the victim of harassment at traffic lights. If they are like me, they can also agree that they have been victims of sexual harassment there.

Are we breeding a new cohort of employees on the road? About a month ago, I posted my experience on Twitter in which after telling a window wiper no, he not only used his wiper to hit my car, but also used some not-so-decent words to explain what he would want to do to me sexually. Many women, and surprisingly men, commented and retweeted, and it became clear to me that my situation was not an anomaly.

I ask the Government this: Are there plans to regulate this new booming industry? Are there plans to protect users of the road against this? Given that there is a new generation entering this field, I want to ensure that this is addressed so that their futures can be protected.