Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Derrick Kellier, says his Ministry is on a drive to promote the importance of high levels of productivity in achieving steady economic progress.
"We… have singled out productivity as one of our main areas of focus and we intend… (to take) this message right across the country,” the Minister told reporters on April 12, after touring the National Insurance Scheme (NIS) office in Montego Bay, St. James.
"Productivity is the key to success in the development process. The capacity of the country will develop if we can get the productivity index moving, so we want to build a (productivity) culture that is accepted by everyone,” he added.
Minister Kellier said the tour was part of his ongoing visits to the Ministry’s facilities across the island to see firsthand, the interaction between staff and clients, and deal forthrightly with concerns.
"We want to encourage staff and to impress on them the need to continue to give quality service to the country. That is what enhances good governance; the service that you give to your clients. Also, we intend to ensure that in every parish, we have appropriate offices to serve the public,” he stated.
The Minister expressed satisfaction with the operation of the Montego Bay office. “This office is a model as to what government offices should be across the island. The managers and staff must be commended for the way in which they are carrying out their duty on behalf of the citizens of this country,” he stated, informing that a NIS office is soon to be built in Clarendon.
Minister Kellier informed that since assuming office, he has sought to deal with safety at the workplace, ensure that plans are cemented for the Ministry’s input in the employment of some 700 persons under the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP), while linkages have been made with employers in Canada, “who have come down here and entered into partnership arrangements with the Brown’s Town Community College to train workers for the Canadian skills programme."
By Garfield L. Angus, JIS Reporter