Port attends security conference

POSTED: 09/25/15 9:41 PM


GREAT BAY – Port St. Maarten Security and several law enforcement agency representatives from St. Maarten recently attended a Royal Caribbean Cruise Line (RCCL) security conference where a strategic security alliance has been formed.

RCCL allowed a team of security and law enforcement professionals from St. Maarten to speak at the conference held by Global Security for the company’s security staff. This conference is held twice a year, and this is the first time that a port destination has been included as speaker.

The St. Maarten team was made up of Acting Chief Police Commissioner Carl John, Immigration and Border Protection Policy advisor Erling Hoeve, Customs Department Deputy Chief Linda Ros, a liaison officer for the St. Maarten National Security Service, and Port St. Maarten Safety and Security Manager Roberto Levenstone.

This initiative was championed by the port’s CEO Mark Mingo and supported by Minister of Justice Dennis Richardson. It came about from a meeting that Richardson and former Minister of Tourism and Economic Affairs Claret Connor, held with the President of the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Michele Paige, and the association’s security advisers in Miami several weeks ago.

The team shared strategic security plans that highlighted the network that offers security for cruise ship passengers explaining the workings of the existing network and security barrier from the cruise docks extending to the country’s borders.

Security professionals were given the opportunity at the forum to share concerns with providers of those services. It was pointed out that global events that increase threats to developing nations are a reality, and security professionals must consider and share knowledge for a better interphase with each other.

Compiling information from open sources and analyzing industry’s data will aid in destinations’ enhancement of overall security for the visitor. With the constant evolution of global terrorism, destination facility security plans must merge with the country’s security plan and include partner and stakeholder’s wishes. Good contact and endured cooperation serves to help avert a country’s crime situation affecting the industries critical to its development it was pointed out at the conference. The terrorist attack in Tunisia and criminal acts in Honduras are just two examples of risks for which destinations must exhaust all resources to mitigate.

Other speakers at this conference were representatives of the FBI on Crimes on the High Seas and the inner workings of the Global terrorist networks; RCCL brand President Michael Bayley; Celebrity Cruises Brand President Lisa Lutoff – Perlo and the Senior Vice President for Global Security and RCCL’s Company Security Officer Gary Bald.

The St. Maarten team was part of RCCL’s boarding operations for Majesty of the Seas alongside with a US law enforcement contingent that protects United States borders from illegal movements. Last Thursday the team observed the boarding operations for Carnival Cruise Lines at their terminal in Port Miami.


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