Editor’s note: Anyone interested in signing the petition can now do so at the link at the end of the story.
One local resident has launched an online petition in efforts to tackle what he describes as “a loudspeaker culture” which he said is plaguing the island.
Colton Paul told Dominica News Online that he started the petition because noise has become a major problem in Dominica.
It aims to have the government ammend and enforce the Noise Abatement Act of 1993.
“In recent years a culture of noise has emerged where it is impossible to walk down the street, get on a bus, be at peace in your home and to sleep without a loudspeaker blaring deafening music in your ears,” he said.
He noted that people simply “blast music to disturb the entire neighbourhood at all hours of the day and night and at any time of the year, without any regard for their neighbours or the law.”
He added further that the police are reluctant to enforce the laws which govern noise pollution and he is of the view that the petition will make a significant difference.
“The noise culture is a destructive force that is blighting not only our lives but the lives many,” he stated. “I am thinking about the impact of noise on the elderly, the sick, the young child whose brain is being wired for noise, who will grow up believing that noise is ‘normal’, who will wear the fact that they can sleep in the mouth of a loudspeaker like a badge of honour; the child who will internalize the negative values and beliefs of the noise culture and the child who is trying to study.”
Paul is of the opinion that noise is an acute form of mental abuse which should not be disassociated from the abuse of children and women and the abuse of the physical landscape, and it should be brought to an end.
“Like these other forms of abuse it must be brought to an end,” he remarked. “It is immoral and illegal and is incompatible with a vision of a healthy, peaceful and loving society.”
Paul stated that a healthier environment must be created for children who will form the next generation and the elimination of excessive noise should be taken into consideration
“I hope all right thinking people will add their name to the petition to send a clear message to the lawmakers and lawbreakers that the loudspeaker culture that is spoiling the lives of many and marring the ability of decent law abiding citizens to enjoy their home will not tolerated and that those in authority will take the appropriate and necessary action to end the culture of noise,” Paul said.
The petition will eventually be forwarded to the prime minister and commissioner of police.