JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Ministry of National Security and the JPS will create job experience opportunities for at-risk youth in the Corporate Area.
  • The initiative will see 20 youth from the CSJP receiving on the job training at the JPS over a six-month period.
  • The CSJP has taken these youth through Levels 1, 2, and 3 Certification in Electrical Installation and Maintenance at the HEART Trust/NTA.

The Ministry of National Security has partnered with the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) to create job experience opportunities for at-risk youth in the Corporate Area.

The initiative, which is estimated to cost $5 million, will see 20 youth from the Citizen Security and Justice Programme (CSJP) receiving on the job training at the JPS over a six-month period.

Of the cohort, 10 will be placed in the organisation’s loss reduction team; six within the Kingston and St. Andrew field operations; and four within the transmission and distribution group.

The CSJP has taken these youth through Levels 1, 2, and 3 Certification in Electrical Installation and Maintenance at the HEART Trust/NTA.

They have also successfully participated in the CSJP/JDF internship programme and will now gain further experience in the world of work through this programme.

Speaking at the official signing ceremony for the project on February 6, at the JPS Sports Club in Kingston, Minister of National Security, Hon. Peter Bunting, noted that initiatives such as these are crucial to Government’s crime fighting strategies.

“The internship programme is looking at youth who may have been exposed in their communities to gang violence, exposed to attempts to recruit them into a criminal gang and by engaging them in these on the job internship programmes, what we intend to do is prevent that epidemic of violence from infecting these young people,” Mr. Bunting emphasised.

He said that a multi-disciplinary and multi-sectoral approach by all members of society and a willingness to change, is crucial to stemming and reducing crime across the island.

“If you think you can deal with crime without dealing with issues of family, education, community mental health services, the built environment and very critically,  the issue of employment, then you are really spending your time battling the symptoms instead of the root cause of the disease,” the Minister argued.

The Minister pointed out that the work experience will provide a platform for further employment prospects for the participants.

Highlighting the importance of the initiative, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the JPS, Kelly Tomblin, said partnerships are the soul of economic and social development with the country.

She added that her company is pleased to be associated with initiatives that will offer crucial training to youth.

Director, Regional Operations (East), Jamaica Public Service, Omar Sweeney, said the agreement is mutually beneficial as the interns will gain valuable work experience, while the organisation will benefit from an untapped pool of talent.

He informed that the graduates will be exposed to two formal training sessions at the organisation’s training school as well as on the job daily experiences.

Participant in the programme, Horace Bailey, said that being affiliated to the CSJP has completely changed his life. He has pledged to continue striving for excellence.

Since 2001, the Ministry of National Security, by way of the CSJP, has positively impacted the socio-economic prospects of 8,707 inner-city youth through Vocational Skills Training, Tuition Support, Job Placement and Employment Internships.

The CSJP primarily targets the most at-risk youth whose vulnerability stem from having dropped out of school or being in conflict with the law.