STRENGTHENING MENTAL HEALTH SERVICE DELIVERY, TCIG APPOINTS A SECOND PSYCHIATRIST, DR. MARLYN GODINES-CAPUZ

As of March 2018, Dr. Marlyn Godines, has been appointed Psychiatrist - Zone 1 for the Department of Mental Health & Substance Dependence, within the Ministry of Health, Agriculture, Sports & Human Services.

This appointment follows the United Nations induction of mental health as a sustainable goal and the need for increased access to mental health and psychiatric services throughout these islands. Dr. Godines, a native of the Philippines, possesses a wealth of experience in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of persons across the spectrum with mental health concerns such as depression and those suffering with cognitive disorders. Her ability to function in this role is preceded by her successes in the Philippines over the past ten (10) years.

Once achieving a doctorate of medicine, in 2007, she attained a post graduate internship with the Chinese General Hospital and Medical Center, following this she furthered her education/training by completing a 4-year Psychiatric Residency with the National Center for Mental Health in the Philippines. As one of her first priorities in this role Dr. Godines, is charged with delivering optimal mental health services across the islands of Grand Turk, Salt Cay and South Caicos. Being the leader of the National Center for Mental Health - Camarin Extension, she has excellent and current knowledge of the practices and medications that are best used for treatment of individuals suffering with these illnesses.

Though possessing many medical accolades such as being a certified member of the Psychiatric Specialty Board in the Philippines and holding a Masters in Management in Hospital Administration, Dr. Godines asserts that human rights and the ethical management of mental health patients is her primary concern. Employing skills from her membership on the Committee for Human Rights, National Center for Mental Health as well as the Technical Working Group National Center for Mental Health Integrity Management Committee will be an asset in ensuring continued integrity for patients in these islands.

Prior to acceptance of this appointment Dr. Godines was employed by the Department of Mental Health & Substance Dependence as a locum during Dr. Diana Dizon’s absence. We wish to recognize and thank Dr. Diana Dizon, for being the sole psychiatrist for the territory prior to this appointment and for her dedication and significant advancements in this role.

The Department of Mental Health and Substance Dependence can be reached on 338-3613 in Grand Turk, and 338-4737 in Providenciales or visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/TCIDMHSD

 

APPOINTMENT OF NEW SUPREME COURT JUDGE

On Monday 16th April, 2018 The Honorable Mr. Justice Shiraz Aziz was sworn in by His Excellency the Governor Dr. John Freeman CMG, as a Judge of the Supreme Court.

 

Justice Aziz was admitted to the Bar in 1997, graduating from the University of London before gaining a Masters of Laws in Environmental Law. He practiced law as a Barrister in the United Kingdom as a tenant at Garden Court Chambers, Lincolns Inn Fields, London focusing on criminal defence work. Justice Aziz specialized in criminal and quasi criminal law, in particular dealing with offences classed as serious and complex.

 

As a practitioner Justice Aziz appeared in the Supreme Court, Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, Court of Appeal and Crown Court and was involved in serious and complex cases in the Caribbean Region including Trinidad and Tobago, St Vincent and the Grenadines, St Lucia and Barbados.

 

Justice Aziz is also involved in legal and advocacy training for various Law Society’s and Bar Councils. Between 2006 and 2014 as a practitioner Justice Aziz has provided legal and advocacy training in various countries. From 2011 to 2014 Legal 500 rated Justice Aziz as one of the leading lawyers in the UK in Crime and referred to him as “fearless in court” “a safe pair of hands” and as someone who “is good with clients, friendly and approachable”. Justice Aziz was appointed as High Court Judge to the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) and assigned to Grenada. A number of his written judgments can be found at www.eccourts.org.

 

Justice Aziz has been Chairperson of the Mediation Committee and has also been appointed as a member to the Sentencing Advisory Committee of the ECSC. Justice Aziz has a keen interest in continuing judicial and legal education and is also known for his proactive style of case and jury management. He is very open to discussions and integration between bar and bench.

 

When not in Court Justice Aziz has a keen interest in golf, sailing and deep sea fishing.

 

The Judicial Administration warmly welcomes Justice Aziz and wishes him much success in his new appointment.

 

Ministry of Education Update on School Repairs

The Ministry of Education, Youth, Culture and Library Services wishes to continue updating the public on the progress of works to the schools’ infrastructure throughout the Turks and Caicos Islands following the passage of Hurricanes Irma and Maria in September last year.

 

As we are aware, 95% of the schools throughout the islands were affected.  This has encouraged the Government to take a bold decision to rebuild stronger, more resilient schools, improving the standard of school buildings so that students can learn in high quality classrooms and teachers have access to the best facilities. This is a vital part of the government’s long term plan for education and will help build a stronger economy and a fairer society.

 

Works on Phase III of the Long Bay High School is progressing on schedule and the work is expected to be completed in July 2018.  Works at Enid Capron Computer Classroom Block are ongoing and projected to be completed in May 2018.

 

A supplementary budget of $8 million was approved for repair works to Iris Stubbs Primary and the Marjorie Basden High School will commence shortly.   The new block of the Eliza Simons Primary School will be completed in July 2018.  The Government, in its commitment to rebuilding schools, has budgeted in this fiscal year 2018/2019 funds for the repairs of our public schools.  These schools include Mary Robinson Primary, Enid Capron Primary (Phase II), Ianthe Pratt Primary, C. Hubert James Primary, Adelaide Oemler Primary, Oseta Jolly Primary and Clement Howell High School.  Although repair work at the Clement Howell High School commenced before the storm, the school sustained extensive damages during the passage of Hurricanes Irma and Maria.  Work will commence once the budget is passed in the House of Assembly.

 

The Ministry would like to commend all principals, teachers, parents and everyone who have been instrumental in helping the school term to continue despite the challenges that exist throughout the islands.    Your resilience and unwavering support cannot go unnoted.  The school is perceived by children as a psychologically and emotionally safe space and our focus right now is to make sure that our kids are secured and that our teachers are in a comfortable and safe environment.  Works are ongoing to improve working and learning conditions at Gustavus Lightbourne Sports Complex for the teachers and students alike. 

 

Further updates from the Ministry will be issued through the media as the situation demands.