The Jamaica Community-Based Vulnerability Assessment (CBVA) research team conducted an interactive community feedback session in Negril on April 15, 2014, at the Negril Community Center. This session was a method of validating the previously collected and analyzed CBVA data to ensure the results that are perceived by the CBVA team are accurate.
Over 30 participants attended the feedback session, which provided for an excellent opportunity to present and discuss CBVA findings. The presentation also led to extensive discussions between participants, allowing for a useful understanding of the various perceptions of issues within the community. Major vulnerabilities for the community of Negril include: beach erosion, in some areas along Seven Mile Beach, as much as 40 meters of the beach has eroded, which is an on-going threat to the beach tourism industry; coral reef depletion, coral reef systems in Negril have significantly deteriorated over time, which adversely impacts both tourism and fisheries sectors; development of a sand bar blocking the Negril River, this often prevents boat tour operators and fisher people from performing daily functions that are required to sustain their livelihoods; and changes in the mode of tourism from dominantly small-scale guesthouse style to large-scale all-inclusive style tourism, which contributes to challenges faced by many smaller-scaled tourism businesses.
Although beach erosion, coral reef depletion, and the sand bar issue remain key vulnerabilities, it was revealed through further discussions at the feedback workshop that the trend to favour a large-scale mode of tourism has started to reverse, creating increased business opportunities for small-scale tourism operators. With contributions from Steven Alexander, Derek Armitage, Thalia Balkaran, Donovan Campbell, Ryan Hogarth, Ashley Sprague, and Johanna Wandel, Maliha Majeed has compiled a comprehensive report on CBVA results.