JIS News

National Labour Day, which is being celebrated on Monday, May 25 this year, was officially launched today (May 1) on the lawns of Jamaica House under the theme, ‘Ketch the Vibes: Volunteerism, Intervention, Beautification, Empowerment for Success’.
There will be three national projects this year: Hospital Spruce Up at the St. Ann’s Bay Hospital; installation of a multi-purpose court in Riversdale, St. Catherine; and a Tissue Culture Ginger project at Top Alston, Clarendon.
There will also be a Workers’ Week programme, from Sunday, May 17 to Monday, May 25.
Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Hon. Olivia Grange, explained that the Workers’ Week programme will honour the men and women on “whose backs” the country was built.
“We will show special honour and respect for their sacrifices and we will pay tribute to the Jamaica labour movement, which continues to fight for workers to ensure that their rights, their jobs and their welfare are protected,” Miss Grange said.
She also urged every Jamaican to “Ketch the Vibes” this Labour Day, by giving of themselves to help make a difference in their communities.
“Perhaps you cannot paint or build a house, but maybe you are a doctor and can give checkups. Perhaps you are a hairdresser, why not go to an infirmary on Labour Day and help make their day? Each of us has something to offer, and whatever you can do to make a difference, make that your Labour Day project,” she suggested.
“We expect that there will be many individuals and groups, communities and corporate projects. Parish Councils will also be developing parochial projects,” Miss Grange added.
Minister of Labour and Social Security, Pearnel Charles, said that there was a need to transmit to young people the spirit of volunteerism and unity.
“I think that too many people believe that they have to be paid to make a contribution to the social and cultural development of the country. The greatest asset of a nation is the spirit of its people, and the greatest threat to the security of any nation is the breakdown of that spirit,” Mr. Charles said.
He said that Labour Day would be a testament to the power, strength and accomplishment of the Jamaican worker.
Opposition spokesperson on Labour and Social Security, Derrick Kellier, urged Jamaicans to get involved in projects within their communities, that will help to enhance the environment.
“The success and development of the country over these many years, has been built on the back of Labour. I wish that this year’s Labour Day projects will be a success, and I encourage all Jamaicans to support them,” Mr. Kellier said.
The Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions (JCTU) was represented by vice-president, Danny Roberts.
Persons can register their projects with the Parish Council; the Social Development Commission (SDC); Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC); and the National Labour Day Secretariat at the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, or online at www.jis.gov.jm.

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