JIS News

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  • During the 2015/2016 Fiscal Year, approximately 15,000 Jamaicans were employed in the United States (US) and Canada, under the Overseas Employment Programme.
  • “The prospects and placements in the United States are also trending upwards as this market continues to rebound. The growing demand for Jamaican workers in both the agricultural and hospitality sectors resulted in increases of 5.8 per cent and three per cent, respectively, in 2015,” Mrs. Robinson said.
  • Meanwhile, the Minister said that Jamaican workers, wherever they are found, bring strong work ethic, discipline, productivity and a commitment to excellence.

During the 2015/2016 Fiscal Year, approximately 15,000 Jamaicans were employed in the United States (US) and Canada, under the Overseas Employment Programme.

Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Shahine Robinson, made the disclosure during her contribution to the 2016/17 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on June 28.

She further informed that this year, emphasis will be placed on strengthening, expanding and diversifying the range of job opportunities with a goal of placing 16,000 Jamaican workers in the North American market by the end of the 2017 season.

The Minister said the Canadian Authorities in 2014 restricted the entry of foreign workers into certain low-skill occupations.

She noted that recent reports suggest that this situation is likely to change in the very near future as the Canadian Government, in response to critical labour shortages, is contemplating relaxing some of these restrictions.

“The prospects and placements in the United States are also trending upwards as this market continues to rebound. The growing demand for Jamaican workers in both the agricultural and hospitality sectors resulted in increases of 5.8 per cent and three per cent, respectively, in 2015,” Mrs. Robinson said.

“The Ministry is of the firm view that there is further scope for expansion in the United States. It is in this context that plans are afoot for me to meet with major employer groups both in the US and Canada in the coming weeks to promote the progamme and the quality of our workers with a view to securing more jobs,” she added.

Meanwhile, the Minister said that Jamaican workers, wherever they are found, bring strong work ethic, discipline, productivity and a commitment to excellence.

“These powerful attributes will be promoted and made available in the global marketplace. Consequently, exploratory approaches are being made in unexplored territories right here in the Caribbean and even as far away as the Australasian region, and we are actively seeking to convert these prospects into avenues for employment,” Mrs. Robinson said.