Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 20th 2017 Contents news A7
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Woman who gave birth on pavement
Back on the streets
Nineteen months after giv-
ing birth to a baby girl on the
pavement at Curepe Junction,
Crystal Dennis is now back on
Dennis, 36, lives in squalor in a
bus shed on the Priority Bus Route
in Curepe, a stone's thrown from
where she had her baby.
Dennis' common-law husband,
Anthony Abraham, 55, whom she
lived with in a makeshift shack on
the river bank, just off Farm Road,
St Joseph, after the baby was born,
died last year.
Thereafter, the shack they occu-
pied was swept away after the river
overflowed its bank, leaving Dennis
With no one to turn to for help,
Dennis moved into the bus shed in
early November, last year.
Dennis grabbed headline news in
June of 2015 after giving birth on the
pavement in full view of the public.
Due to the couple's living condi-
tions and not having a proper home,
the newborn became a ward of the
court and remained at the Mt Hope
Women's Hospital where Dennis
stayed for observation for three days
after her delivery.
At that time, Dennis maintained
that she wanted her baby.
It was reported that Dennis and
Abraham had been living together
for 16 years and were the parents
of three other children, Anna, 11,
Amanda, six and Aaron, five.
Sitting on a smelly and dingy piece
of sponge which was littered with
dirty clothes, empty food contain-
ers and water bottles, Dennis kept
begging passers-by to buy a box of
Chinese food for her.
Her pleas fell on deaf ears.
With arms outstretched, Den-
nis' orange coloured tube dress was
pulled below her bust-line, while she
wore no underwear.
Parts of her hair had been shaven
off crudely with a razor. Dennis ap-
peared to be disoriented as she kept
repeating she had "no baby."
At times she uttered things that
made no sense. Other times she re-
membered names and events.
Dennis described the bus shed as
a temporary shelter.
"I just staying here for a while.
I living up the road," she said, but
could not give an address or precise
She could not remember what led
her to live there, but stated that she
was comfortable. "You know Tony
died. I used to live with him in a
house in the back there. The house
not there again," she said.
Dennis had no idea what led to
Questioned how she gets food,
Dennis said people give her things
to eat. "A man brought a sandwich
for me yesterday. Sometimes I would
beg for a meal outside KFC in Curepe
Yesterday, Medical Chief of Staff
at the Women's Hospital Dr Karen
Sohan, in giving an update of the
baby, said the child was referred
to the Children's Authority. Senior
communications associate at the
Children's Authority, Shemelle
Paradice, in response to an email
yesterday wrote, "Please be advised
that there is a gag order on this mat-
ter," referring to the baby.
No further information was pro-
vided by Paradice about the child.
Sohan said she was told that the
"baby is safe."
If Dennis is brought into the Acci-
dent and Emergency Department at
the Eric Williams Medical Sciences
Complex, Mt Hope, Sohan said, "We
would then refer her to psychiatry
(unit) and social workers would get
Sohan said the hospital had que-
ries about Dennis' mental well-be-
ing in 2015.
She said the baby stayed at Mt
Hope for approximately six months.
"Once she started on solids and
passed the neonatal period she was
transferred to the Eric Williams
Medical Science Complex."
Sohan was adamant that Dennis
needed help urgently. "Without
a doubt we have to get some help
for her. I am just sorry for her. We
can't remove her just so. She has to
Crystal Dennis, who gave birth to her baby girl on the pavement at Curepe Junction in 2015, quenches her thirst at
a bus shed she now calls home. PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
Former minister of the people
and social development Chris-
tine Newallo-Hosein said her
heart goes out to Dennis seeing
the conditions in which she lives.
"I don't think the Government
is paying much attention to help
street dwellers. As a matter of fact
I expect this situation to worsen."
During her tenure, Newal-
lo-Hosein said her ministry of-
fered the couple a food card and
a rental grant, but they could not
obtain any help because they
did not have their identification
"We were working on that and
then the government changed in
2015. I don't know if they received
She said she heard that Abra-
ham had died.
"What I was told that Abraham
got a blow to his head and passed
Newallo-Hosein said chanc-
es are that Dennis may become
"I understand that men do take
advantage of her during the night.
She is in that bus shed alone. She
shouldn't be there. It is not safe."
Newallo-Hosein said she called
the Inter-Agency Unit which was
established under the then Peo-
ple's Partnership administration
which encouraged the homeless
into an institution for rehabilita-
tion, but discovered that it had
been disbanded a few months
ago.Minister of the People and
Family Services Cherrie-Ann
Crichlow-Cockburn on Wednes-
day asked that all questions re-
garding Dennis' case be sent by
a text message to her.
"I would have to liaise with the
staff at the ministry to find out
the specifics you require."
Crichlow-Cockburn had not
provided any response by yes-
Despite the challenges he faced trying to walk
from San Fernando to Port-of-Spain in protest
of the spiralling crime rate, radio personality
Activist to complete anti-crime walk
Terrance Guevara intends to complete his jour-
On Monday, Guevara embarked on a solo journey
from Coffee Street, San Fernando, with the intention
of walking to the capital city.
However, he had to stop when he got to Charliev-
ille as both the soles of his feet were blistered and
bloodied by pebbles from the road which had gotten
into his sneakers.
Guevara said he is hoping to complete his mission
this time around and he is calling on other citizens
to join in.
"I am trying to plan this leg of the march a little
better and I have written the Port-of-Spain City Cor-
poration seeking permission to use the Brian Lara
Promenade on Saturday," he said.
"We intend to begin the march at Mt Hope and go
along the Eastern Main Road into Port-of-Spain."
He said his feet are still sore and his cuts are not
healed but he intends to rally through as he believes
this effort can awaken the consciousness of the pop-
ulation about crime.
If you want to join Guevara on Saturday, you can
contact him at 732-7676 or find him on Facebook.
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