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Feb 14, 2019

DYS Condemns Killing of UB Students

The Department of Youth Services condemns the killing of UB students Masaki Yanai and Dwayne Cummings. In a release issued today, the DYS says that it joins with the CARICOM Youth Ambassadors to express its condolences and denounce the murder of two young and productive members of society. Masaki Yanai was shot and killed last week when he tried to help his father during an armed robbery. The other student, Dwayne Cummings was walking home from a basketball game when he was shot and killed in Orange Walk. Both young men are described as hard working and quiet youths who were engaged in positive activities.  PR Officer of the DYS Renata Samuels says that the department continues to work with youth across Belize to help to curb these kinds of crime.


Renata Samuels

Renata Samuels, PR Officer, DYS

“We feel so much remorse and we feel so much pain because this is ongoing and ongoing. We have senseless murders happening in the city and outside of Belize on a whole. We want to condemn the act on a whole. We work with youth on daily basis and we hear their stories. They are so productive. They are the future and the now. We are trying to uplift them more than anything else right now. So, the Department stands together right now trying to push forth more programs, trying to uplift and bring about a more health and safe environment for our youth of today. We try to send off a positive message to let them understand that their actions do have consequences and to let them understand the idea of being able to freely talk about what goes on and to be able to actual come and sit down and use our centers. We have free wifi, free printing – things they can use and we would like to talk to them; having a one on one discussion – getting to that personal way with the youth. We use these examples of these senseless deaths and let them know that this could possibly be your future. Right now we have our different centers doing different programs out there, whether it is training for peer helpers, job preparedness and so forth. They can go in to all the centers and check out what is happening. We have the studio open in Belize City that is free to all youth. If you are into music, we have our computer centers that do graphic designing and the list goes on. We have things available that they can really put their time into and really be able to share their passions and dreams and so forth.”

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