Jamaica’s tourism sector has been left with the difficult task of trying to cauterise serious damage being done to its reputation, following an investigative story published in the international media, which outlined terrifying incidents of sexual assault on several United States tourists at some of the country’s leading resorts.
In a release yesterday, Jamaica’s tourism ministry said it was aware of the article, adding that it “strongly condemned these incidents of assault and all other crimes against visitors and citizens alike. We want the public to be assured that all cases that are identified, whether they are current or of a historic nature, are being given full attention because Jamaica is committed to maintaining a safe, secure and seamless destination.”
Titled ‘Resorts in Jamaica are facing a ‘historic’ sexual assault problem’, the article, documenting graphic details of the events, has been circulating on various traditional and social media platforms since yesterday. It was first published by the Free Press, which is a part of the USA TODAY Network.
Documenting cases that took place over several years, among other things, the report indicated that 78 US citizens were raped in Jamaica between 2011 and 2017, according to State Department statistics.
Some of the victims, which were outlined in the article, include a mentally handicapped woman in her 20s; an Indiana mother who was gang-raped by three Cuban soccer players in a resort bathroom stall; a 20-year-old woman raped by two men in her hotel; two Detroit mothers raped at gunpoint in their room; and a Kent County teenager and her 21-year-old friend who were gang-raped by lifeguards in a locked laundry room at the resort where they were staying.