Pier Park Relaxes Restrictions On Minors

BVI Platinum News | 0 Comment
January 12, 2018 8:02 am AST
Photo Credit: Sherine Williams/BVI Platinum News
The controversial restriction on minors entering the Tortola Pier Park (TPP) has been relaxed, allowing those who are not disruptive to use the park without supervision by an adult. However, they will be monitored by security.

Following a meeting with TPP representatives and Education Minister, Hon. Myron Walwyn on Monday, January 8, TPP management made the disclosure.

“In efforts to ensure enjoyment for all guests, the Management of Tortola Pier Park Ltd. implemented a Parental Guidance Required (PGR) program, with the first phase (phase 1) being rolled out to the public on 22nd December, 2017,” TPP said in a statement on Thursday, January 11.

The TPP added, “This allows students to continue to patronize the Pier Park unsupervised, while being monitored by security.”

According to TPP, phase 1 of the PGR program will continue to be enforced in 2018.

“Disruptive behavior at the facility is not permitted and will be swiftly acted upon with the immediate removal of offenders from Tortola Pier Park.”

However, it must be noted that TPP’s statement on Thursday is not in keeping with its December statement, which made it clear that all minors visiting the park must be accompanied by an adult.

In December, TPP in announcing the measure said that, “The public is hereby advised that effective immediately, all guests under the age of 17 must be accompanied by a parent or supervising adult over the age of 21.”

The December statement said, “Tortola Pier Park’s security reserves the right to refuse entry into the park or escort minors off the premises who are deemed to be disruptive or cause any damage to the facility.”

This decision was met with opposition from both members of the public, Minister Walwyn, and some tenants at the pier.

BVI Platinum News sought a comment from Minister Walwyn about the new development.

“I would like to basically thank them very much for agreeing to meet with me and the Director of Youth Affairs and Sports, Ms. Brenda Lettsome-Tye...One of the arguments that we made to them is that you cannot have young persons who are conducting themselves appropriately suffer for the few who do not," he said.

Minister Walwyn said that his teamn suggested that they target those persons who are exhibiting anti-social behaviour, and then make contact with education officials.

"I asked them to work closely with Brenda Lettsome-Tye and so we should be able to identify those persons who are not conducting themselves appropriately, and then those are the persons we think they should ask to discontinue traversing or visiting the premises (park)," he explained.

Meanwhile, in yesterday's statement, TPP explained that since the implementation of the program, improvement has been noted in students’ behavior while at the Pier Park.

“As such, we would like to thank the community, the Ministry of Communication and Works, the Ministry of Education and Culture, BVI Ports Authority, the Elmore Stoutt High School, the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, and parents who have provided support and assistance in curtailing disruptive behaviors,” the TPP stated.

It further noted that Tortola Pier Park Ltd. reserves the right to take further action if increased incidents of disruptive behaviors or destruction to the property are encountered.
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