About Kate Chappell

"And all I offer here is the distilled poetry of my existence..." Claude McKay, Poet Laureate of Jamaica, 1890-1848 I have been a reporter since 1998, covering mainly business and politics. I have also capitalized on the many skills journalism requires to become an all-around communications specialist. In addition to being a professional curious person and communicator, I have a bad case of the travel bug and can't seem to stay put. Finally, I have put my skills to work as a volunteer in the community wherever I have lived. Now, follow me as I combine these compartments of my life in Kingston, Jamaica, where I will be a voluteer with CUSO-VSO. I am working in Kingston with YOU Jamaica, a non-profiit organization that does mentoring and career counselling with the country's youth. CUSO-VSO is an international agency that places professionals in communities where they work to promote sustainable development.

Tourism numbers hard to beat in 2018

My latest for the Economist Intelligence Unit.


In columnist Carolyn Cooper’s piece in the Gleaner on Sunday, Nov. 4, she refers to my Washington Post story from Oct. 13 about banning plastics in the Caribbean.

I emailed Peter Knight, CEO of NEPA, on October 14 about that issue and another matter. On October 13, The Washington Post published an article by Kate Chappell with the headline, ‘Jamaica takes aim at the trash crisis that is ruining paradise’. Fines of up to $15,000 will be instituted for importing and up to $370 for manufacturing.

I thought the $370 fine for manufacturing must be inaccurate. I asked Mr Knight if he’d been misquoted and suggested that, if so, he should ask the Post to make the correction. The presumed error is still on the newspaper’s website.

Cooper misquotes Knight- it is in fact MP Daryl Vaz’s quote. In addition, my figures are based on information emailed directly to me in response to questions. I am quoting Mr. Knight’s email.

I have been in touch with Dr. Cooper, who has apologized and we have asked for a correction, but as yet it has not been made, hence this post.

Jamaican cannabis

The Globe and Mail newspaper in Canada has a new newsletter devoted to cannabis, now that it has been legalized. On Oct. 17, it became legal. My story looks at how the Jamaican industry is faring now that small amounts have been decriminalized. Authorities are in the process of creating a licensing system. Some people are complaining that it is taking too long.