JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Shahine Robinson, has announced plans for the expansion of the Overseas Employment Programme.
  • Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, announced the programme reviews during his Throne Speech at Gordon House on April 14.
  • A public education programme will be launched to foster greater compliance in the payment of NIS benefits.

Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Shahine Robinson, has announced plans for the expansion of the Overseas Employment Programme.

She said the objective is to provide more job opportunities for Jamaicans.

She noted, for example, that the programme with Canada “has been going on for 50 years now and a lot of Jamaicans depend on it so we are committed to expanding it.”

Minister Robinson was speaking with JIS News on Thursday (April 20) after her first meeting with the Labour Advisory Council (LAC) at her North Street offices in Kingston.

Turning to the reviews to be undertaken of the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH) and the National Insurance Scheme (NIS), she said the objective is to better serve Jamaicans.

“PATH will be reviewed with a focus on empowering persons to move from welfare into work or entrepreneurial and self-sustaining activities. What we want to do is help families to stand on their own,” she stated.

Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, announced the programme reviews during his Throne Speech at Gordon House on April 14.

He informed that the appraisal of the NIS is to address outdated practices and provisions, benefit rates and contributions.

“It will also close loopholes and improve coverage and compliance,” he informed. Drafting instructions are to be sent to the Chief Parliamentary Counsel by the end of the fourth quarter of this fiscal year.

The Governor-General informed that the Ministry of Labour and Social Security will be reducing pension processing times, and will introduce more efficient methods of payment to pensioners, including direct deposit of funds into the bank accounts of new pensioners this year.

A public education programme will be launched to foster greater compliance in the payment of NIS benefits.