KINGSTON — As part of efforts to educate the public about local governance and local government reform, copies of the Councillor's Handbook have been given to the Jamaica Library Service.
The handbooks were presented by Minister of State in the Ministry of Housing, Environment, Water, and Local Government, Hon. Shahine Robinson during a ceremony held at the Jamaica Library Service, on Tom Redcam Drive in Kingston on November 29.
In her remarks, Ms. Robinson noted that the publication of the Councillor’s Handbook is but one strategy being employed by the Department of Local Government to provide citizens with the information necessary for them to be active participants in local governance and in the development of their communities.
“This handbook provides basic information on the roles of Councillors, and aims to provide a clear understanding of the Local Government Environment, processes and areas of focus in the present reform process. It is an essential reference tool for anyone who is interested in governance and that should be everyone,” the Minister of State said.
Ms. Robinson further noted that the handing over of these books also serves to strengthen the Jamaica Library Service’s source of reference material.
"I encourage the Jamaica Library Service to promote the fact that you now have such an important reference book in your repository and implore visitors to the library to open a copy and become more acquainted with the roles and functions of your councillors and the operations of your local authority,” Ms. Robinson said.
Meanwhile, Director General of the Jamaica Library Service, Patricia Roberts expressed her appreciation for the donation.
"I want to thank the Ministry. I think this is particularly interesting because it will be something for us to have our readers look at. Local Governance is very important and if you have good local governance, you are going to have good governance at the national level. But the most important thing is we are all part of the process,” Mrs. Roberts said.
The Jamaica Library Service exists to enable national development through the creation and support of a knowledge-based society of culturally aware lifelong learners by providing universal access to information.
By Latonya Linton, JIS Reporter