Following a US travel advisory urging its citizens to reconsider traveling to Jamaica due to the island’s crime rate and medical services, Stephen Marley is sending a message of “One Love”, encouraging visitors to come to Jamaica.
In partnership with Visit Jamaica, an affiliate of the Jamaica Tourist Board, Stephen Marley, the son of Reggae legend Bob Marley, in a video shared to his verified Instagram account, made an appeal for people to come back to caring, compassion, and unity. “Come back to the vibe that comes alive in Jamaica”, he wrote, in part as a caption for the video.
Stephen Marley’s brother Ziggy, Dancehall deejay Spragga Benz, and Reggae singer Kumar Fyah are among the social media users in agreement with him.
The Jamaican government is also pushing back against the US travel advisory. Some say that the action is without merit. Prime Minister Andrew Holness suggested that the recent US travel advisory is not consistent with the statistics on crime in Jamaica.
Dancehall artist Kranium in a post shared to X formerly Twitter said, “Jamaica is not safe to travel? KMT – if it is one thing for certain Jamaicans don’t trouble who nuh trouble them! Pack you bags, mind you business and enjoy the beautiful island.”
Meanwhile, others argue that no lies were told in the US travel advisory as Jamaica needs to curb the ongoing crime problems and address the deplorable conditions in some public health sectors across the island.
The US State Department’s stance to caution its citizens about travelling to Jamaica, directly impacts the tourism industry and, ultimately the bottom line for many businesses including hotels, villas, Juta drivers, and craft vendors among others.