JIS News

Minister of Health and Environment, Rudyard Spencer, has said that the health sector must strengthen partnerships with the non-governmental community, both locally and internationally; the private sector, and key public sector entities.
He was making his presentation in the 2008/09 Sectoral Debate in Gordon House, yesterday (June 3), where he outlined three key areas, which he said must be given priority attention as the country moved forward.
The second area, he noted, was the enforcement of environmental and health regulations. “We are adopting a zero tolerance for developments that breach guidelines and that are not environmentally friendly. We in Jamaica have seen the adverse effects of environmental degradation. We must strengthen our monitoring and enforcement mechanisms, to ensure that developments are done in accordance with the requirements for the protection of the environment and wastes are disposed of in an appropriate manner,” the Minister emphasised.
Mr. Spencer said that thirdly, there was the need for an aggressive and effective public education strategy that would inform Jamaicans of acceptable patterns of behaviour relating to household waste disposal. “Most of the Jamaican people do not know how to do basic things, such as how to dispose of household waste,” he pointed out.
The Minister expressed his appreciation for the support of organizations, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), community based organisations, service clubs, churches, and international partners such as Global Fund for HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis; the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO), the World Bank, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the European Union.
“Our local partners, such as the Heart Foundation, the Diabetes Foundation, Jamaica AIDS Support, Environmental Foundation of Jamaica, our lobbyists, especially in the environment sector, for continuing to put service above self. This country is grateful for the tireless and often thankless job that you do to give our people hope and confidence in the future of their country,” he said.