Canada has issued another travel advisory, warning that travelers to the Bahamas "should exercise a high degree of caution (due to) high rates of crime, especially in Nassau."
The Canadian government said that "crime occurs mainly in Nassau and Freeport. There has been an increase in armed robberies targeting tourists in Nassau. Incidents take place in populated and isolated areas, and even in daylight hours. Do not carry large sums of cash or wear expensive jewelery. Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at ail times. If you are threatened by robbers, stay calm and do not resist. Home invasions are also of concern in Nassau."
The government also warned that "sexual assaults are on the rise in Nassau." Canada specifically warned that "there have been reports of jet-ski operators assaulting their clients in New Providence and Paradise Islands".
Two months ago the Nassau Guardian reported that a Bahamian taxi cab driver was arrested on charges that he raped a US woman visiting Nassau.
Nassau’s Tribune newspaper published an article in September 2014 about the last Canadian crime warning for the Bahamas. The US government, through the State Department and the US Embassy, has issued numerous warnings about crime in Nassau affecting cruise passengers and tourists.
We have written frequently about the high incidents of murder and armed robbery in Nassau (New Providence). Last year, the country experienced a record number of murders. The murder rate in the Bahamas is far more than 30 per 100,00, compared to the U,S, per capita rate or around 4.5 per 100,000.
We have also written about Canadians residents and citizens becoming victims of horrific violent crimes in the Bahamas. You can read a few of our articles here and here.
Many cruise passengers chose to decide to stay on their cruise ships while in the port of Nassau.
June 9, 2016 Update: The Nassau Tribune covered the Canadian travel advisory. The Bahama Journal quoted the leader of the opposition party, Dr. Hubert Minnis, saying:
"“Record high murder rates, and countless stories of the latest violent crime dominating the front page of our papers have had a chilling effect on the entire country and it continues to bleed out beyond our islands. As horrific as the crime rate has become, what’s more astounding is the lack of action from the Government.”
Photo credit: Tribune newspaper