JIS News

Prime Minister Bruce Golding says Jamaica must get back to the family and the role it plays because it is there that each person finds roots, connections, bearings and directions.
He said that although people may stray or their behaviour may vary at times, it is the home and the role of the family that creates the architecture of behaviour.
Mr. Golding was speaking at the launch of the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce sponsored public education Family Life and Family values Mass media Campaign at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel last night (July 22)
He said the country has to find a way to inspire, motivate and to reach people to buy into programmes such as the JCC’s family life campaign. He noted that several agencies and the churches have been doing their part but a lot of these programmes are trial and error as there is no ‘one fix’ scheme because you are dealing with human behaviour.
Mr. Golding said for this year alone government was spending $682-million on the Citizens Security and Justice programme where communities are being targeted and efforts were made to try and work to wean members of communities away from criminal activities. He noted that this programme had worked in some communities but failed in others. The Prime Minister said he has instructed the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) and the Ministry of National Security to investigate the reasons why the programme had worked in some places like Fletchers Land while it had failed in others.
He said there are communities where several government agencies, non- government agencies, private sector and church groups, were working on similar social outreach programmes but that there is the need to bring them all together under one structured umbrella. “Let’s pool our ideas and see how we can synchronize them so that the work can have greater impact’, Mr. Golding said.
He noted that a unit has been set up at Jamaica House under the leadership of the Rev. Al Miller to co-ordinate this programme under the theme ‘Fresh Start’, which is intended to call the nation together and to bring back the family as a unifying force.
Also addressing the launch was the Mayor, Councillor Desmond McKenzie, who called for more volunteers and social workers to fill the vacuum left behind by parents who have gone abroad. He is of the view that the absence of parents from the home is responsible for the breakdown in the family values in the country.
Outlining the Family life and family values programme, Chairman of the JCC Civic Committee, Mr. Sameer Younis, called for a ban on the kind of music which promotes violence against sectors of the society, the police, women and children. He said what is needed is a total change of culture. “It is now or never for us to act and to act strongly to change a situation that has reached disastrous proportions’, he said.