GraceKennedy VP Urges Region to Focus On Global Crisis Opportunities


The urgent need for Jamaica, and the rest of the English-speaking Caribbean, to start focusing on how to benefit from opportunities arising from the current global economic crisis, has been emphasized by Vice-President of GraceKennedy Money Services, Noel Greenland, Monday (October 11).

UNI Americas, global trade union organization, representative, Joanne De Freitas, speaking to regional trade union leaders at a workshop/seminar on trade unionism in the financial sector hosted by UNI and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) at the Alhambra Inn, Tucker Avenue, Kingston on Monday (October 11). The workshop ends on Thursday (October 14).

Speaking to regional trade unionists at the opening of a seminar/workshop at the Alhambra Inn, Tucker Avenue, Kingston, Mr. Greenland suggested that it was time for the region’s leadership to recognize the need to focus on how to maximize the benefits that will arise.
“Let us ask ourselves this fundamental question: What if the crisis was to end tomorrow? What would be our lesson from that? What would we take as a people, as a coming out of this crisis: ‘Here is the opportunity that I have identified and this is what I am going to do’.what is it that is going to take us through that?” Mr. Greenland raised the issue.
“I put it to you, my friends, that maybe the single most important thing that we can do to get us on that path to recognizing our opportunities, is for us to focus to on them, and there are so many good things that we have as a region and as a people we need to focus on them now,” he stated.
He called on the leadership within the region to recognize that things need to be done, and while a few opportunities have been identified, there was optimism that there are many unrecognized opportunities out there.
“Our roots are here, but our branches spread far and wide, right across the world,” he said as he proposed the Caribbean Diaspora as one area still be to be fully exploited.
He suggested that the region ask itself the question: “What will be my legacy, or our legacy be from this crisis?” Other speakers at the opening ceremony included: global trade union organization, UNI Americas’ representatives Joanne de Freitas and Marcio Monzane; FES Director, Judith Wedderburn; BITU President, Kavan Gayle; and UAWU President, Lambert Brown.
The Seminar/Workshop is being hosted by UNI Americas, of which local trade unions – the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union (BITU), the University and Allied Workers Union (UAWU) and the Union of Technical, Administrative and Supervisory Personnel (UTASP) are members, and the Friederich Ebert Stiftung (FES) which focuses on issues such as trade liberalization and integration within the region.
The workshop has as its theme, “Building Union Power and Global Framework Agreements In (Regional) Multinational Enterprises” and concludes on Thursday, October 14. Issues being tackled include: Implications of CSME and Financial Regulation on the Caribbean Finance sector; Challenges Facing Caribbean Women and Youth in the Financial Services Sector; Strategic Organising for Caribbean Finance Sector; and Strategic Collective Bargaining for Caribbean Finance Sector.

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