JIS News

State Minister for Labour and Social Security, Hon. Andrew Gallimore, has said that the proposed Jobs Pact for the economic recovery of Jamaica will help to generate employment for citizens made jobless due to the ongoing global financial crisis.
“We believe that if the Jobs Pact is properly formulated, it will… help to examine new opportunities for employment and provide creative ways for persons, who are separated from their jobs to deal with this very, very trying and challenging situation,” the State Minister said today (March 1) at the opening of the two-day tripartite workshop hosted by the Ministry and International Labour Organization (ILO) at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, New Kingston.
Mr. Gallimore pointed out that last year more than 30,000 Jamaicans lost their jobs, adding that this is likely to continue during the course of this year, before the country’s economy is turned around. He said it is this reason why the formulation of a Jobs Pact is so important for Jamaica’s economic growth.
He stressed that it would, therefore, be essential that the tripartite partners work together. “Unless we are able to get government, employers and labour to work in harmony, it is unlikely that we are going to find the road back to where we want to be as far as growing our economy in a meaningful way,” he said.
The development of a Jobs Pact for the country follows on Jamaica’s involvement in formulating the Global Jobs Pact, which aims to boost job creation and economic recovery efforts across the globe.
Executive Director of the Mona School of Business, University of the West Indies (UWI), Professor Neville Ying, was a member of the drafting committee for the accord, which was adopted following the ILO’s three-day Special Global Jobs Crisis Summit held last June in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Global Jobs Pact also appeals to governments and organisations representing workers and employers to work together to address the global job crisis through policies in line with the ILO’s Decent Work Agenda.
Decent work refers to opportunities for men and women to obtain work that is productive and delivers a fair income; for security in the workplace and social protection for families; better prospects for personal development and social integration; and freedom for people to express their concerns, organise and participate in the decisions that affect their lives.
Among the aims of the workshop is to develop Jamaica’s Decent Work Country Programme as a key component of national development strategies.
Director of the ILO’s Sub-regional Office for the Caribbean, Dr. Ana Teresa Romero, said the focus is on “preparing for post-crisis recovery and equipping people to cope, even better, with whatever challenges may come their way, by focusing on a social and labour dimension to economic development.”
She noted that aspects of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) relating to environmental sustainability; poverty eradication and social inclusion; and justice, peace and security will support the development of the Decent Work Country Programme.
The workshop will focus on six areas of work – development of a national employment report; the promotion of rural employment and local economic development; providing training for rural economic employment; entrepreneurial education with an emphasis on youth and rural women; enhancing social security coverage; and strengthening tripartism and social dialogue and respect for rights at work.

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