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Jan. 12, 2004 – The government is cracking down on illegal hair braiders, especially those offering their services in and around Emancipation Garden.
According to James O'Bryan, St. Thomas-Water Island administrator, fights have broken out between competing braiders, and he has received complaints about "aggressive and abusive treatment of tourists."
In a release from Government House on Monday night, O'Bryan said that "there are four persons authorized to conduct hair-braiding businesses in the Vendors Plaza; all others are conducting operations without legal authority."
He said the territory's regulatory agencies plan to "step up their monitoring" of the park out of concerns over the "deteriorating" condition of the area.
The Police and Licensing and Consumer Affairs Departments have issued a public notice which reads: "There shall be no unlicensed hair braiders conducting business anywhere, especially in the downtown and Emancipation Garden area."
Those ignoring the warning will be subject to "fines and prosecution to the fullest extent of the law," the release said.

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