Leaders from eight Caribbean universities, accompanied by representatives from governments and international organizations, met in Kingston, Jamaica, March 2-4, 2011, to discuss how they should be preparing their graduates to tackle the social, economic and criminal consequences of the drug problem in the Caribbean, especially in the demand reduction field.
The Organization of American States (OAS), through its specialized agency CICAD, and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat, joined together to organize the meeting entitled "CICAD-CARICOM Regional Meeting with Caribbean Universities on the Drug Phenomenon."
The University of the West Indies and the National Council on Drug Abuse (NCDA) of Jamaica hosted the event. The program was funded by the governments of the United States and Canada, and the European Community.
The participants, from 12 countries, heard about CICAD University Partnership Program that has worked with more than 100 universities in Latin America since 1997 to introduce drug-related content in under- and post-graduate curricula, engage in community outreach activities for the promotion of healthy and sustainable life styles and drug abuse prevention, and carry out research on drug issues and related problems.
Experts from Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Peru, and the Caribbean shared lessons learned from that experience.
During the meeting, the university representatives drafted an initial Caribbean proposal in which universities take a lead role in preparing professionals to deal with the complexities of drug issues in their fields.
They discussed how they planned to coordinate their work across the region and maximize the impact through a collaborative arrangement with the OAS and CARICOM.
The OAS participation is part of a broader, Caribbean initiative to provide a comprehensive, multi-front response to the rising threat to public security, in coordination with national governments, international partners and other stakeholders in the region. Activities include specialized training, research into regional trends, and technical assistance.
updated on 8/24/2012 9:23:44 AM