Speaker of the House of Assembly Jomo Thaoms says that after 38 years of independence and four years since SVG has taken over the banner of Reparations, it troubles him that so many young people, men, and woman are engaging in the practice of “Bleaching”.
Bleaching of the skin has become a controversial subject and one that certainly raises many questions and concerns.
Also referred to as skin whitening or skin lightening, skin bleaching involves using chemicals to lighten up the tone of the skin.
Thomas speaking in Parliament on Tuesday 29th August said, people of African descent are not the only ones who bleach; “ it is stated that Japanese bleach, Indians and so, from a humanity standpoint that is important for us to know, but as someone who lives in St Vincent I am really concern about this”.
Thomas said he does not know what the government or the Ministry of Health thinks.
“The leader of this administration I don’t know his position or even the head of the opposition. However, it’s something that we ought to be paying serious attention to”.
The speaker noted that the trend of bleaching is a clearly a reflection of the proliferation of Euro – Centric ideas, issues of beauty and so forth, or what is acceptable in the world, but it is something he would like to see Vincentians think about.
In responding, Gonsalves said he agrees with the speak 100 percent.
“Well there is a view that it should be banned, but let’s talk about it, as to see whether or not the bleaching should be banned”.
Gonsalves said the point about this issue of bleaching is that it goes beyond.
“For instance, if you ban the bleaching are you going to ban the hair pieces, I am asking, so that I raise the question, I was not expressing a view on it, am only stating that for when the discussion begins”.
Gonsalves said that he has his personal opinion, but as a policy maker, he can’t impose such on people. He said the matter that was raised by the speaker is deserving of consideration for further policy action.