Peace Corps Volunteers flee ‘ISIS’ vagrant (Guyana)
Peace Corps volunteers flee ‘ISIS’ vagrant
By Vanessa Braithwaite, Guyana Chronicle
September 26, 2016
Thanks for the “heads up” from Alana DeJoseph (Mali 1992–94)
THE mining town of Linden is now short of four US Peace Corps volunteers in the health and education sectors after they received death threats from a vagrant known as “Killer”. According to reports, the man is known in the community as being mentally unstable. He would oftentimes make public threats, claiming to be a member of the terrorist organization Islamic State and would kill any American national if given the chance.
The man would normally stand at the corner of Republic Avenue and Green Heart Street Mackenzie and verbally abuse passersby, using expletives and other threatening language.
At one time he used to physically assault persons who on many occasion had to be defended by others nearby. While the Linden community is accustomed to the man’s behaviour, it was reported that the Peace Corps volunteers became concerned of the threats and reported same to their local overseers who advised that they be removed from the town.
According to a newspaper vender who sells in proximity to where ‘Killer” makes his threats, the vagrant should be removed from the streets since he physically attacked persons before.
“Ya see when he smoke up the thing, like he does gone mo bad. Sometimes he get knife in he hand all kind thing. I think this man should be removed from the street,” the vendor opined.
Regional Health Committee Chairman, Gregory Harris said the Peace Corps volunteers have contributed positively to the regional health sector, especially in the Chronic Disease Department at the Mackenzie Hospital Complex and the HIV departments of several non-governmental organisations.
When the Guyana Chronicle contacted the Peace Corps Office, the public relations officer was unable to give a comment on the matter but a staff member did confirm that the volunteers were removed.
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The Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act of 2011 mandates that if a Volunteer requests a transfer because he or she feels unsafe, that request should be honored as soon as possible. I am glad that the Volunteers are out and I hope that the people living in Linden are safe from this vagrant. Here is the section of the law, (the president delegates authority down through the “chain of command.” )
“Sec. 8H. (a) <<NOTE: 22 USC 2507h.>> In General.–If a volunteer
requests removal from the site in which such volunteer is serving
because the volunteer feels at risk of imminent bodily harm, the
President shall, as expeditiously as practical after receiving such
request, remove the volunteer from the site. If the President receives
such a request, the President shall assess and evaluate the safety of
such site and may not assign another volunteer to the site until such
time as the assessment and evaluation is complete and the site has been
determined to be safe. Volunteers may remain at a site during the
assessment and evaluation.
“(b) Determination of Site as Unsafe.–If the President determines
that a site is unsafe for any remaining volunteers at the site, the
President shall, as expeditiously as practical, remove all volunteers
from the site.