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  • Newly appointed Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, has pledged to advance the work of the Labour Advisory Council (LAC).
  • Dr. Ferguson was addressing members of the LAC at a meeting held at his North Street office, in Kingston, on November 18.
  • The LAC is a tripartite body that consists of the Ministry, the Jamaica Employers’ Federation and workers represented through the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions. Wednesday was the final meeting of the LAC for 2015.

Newly appointed Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Dr. Fenton Ferguson, has pledged to advance the work of the Labour Advisory Council (LAC).

“Given the critical importance of the work of this advisory group to the overall success and impact of the output of this Ministry, I want to express my support for the work that you do. I come as a builder committed to seeing best practices in the work of the LAC and the Ministry,” he said.

Dr.  Ferguson was addressing members of the LAC at a meeting held at his North Street office, in Kingston, on November 18.

The Minister told the group of employers and union representatives that his approach would be inclusive going forward.

“I wish to establish from the outset that my approach as Chairman of this panel will be one of shared responsibility. I believe in dialogue and consultation, which are hallmarks of the work of the LAC,” he said.

The Minister emphasised that the work of the Council is crucial, and its work has resulted in some noteworthy changes in recent times, including the Flexi-Work Arrangements Bill 2014, The Disability Bill 2014, the ‘productivity revolution’ being spearheaded by the Jamaica Productivity Centre, the establishment of the Labour Market Reform Commission and greater levels of training and skills development in the labour market.

Meanwhile, Dr. Ferguson received a  warm welcome from members of the LAC, including President of the University and Allied Workers Union, Senator Lambert Brown; General Secretary of the National Workers Union, Granville Valentine and President of the Jamaica Employers’ Federation, David Wan.

Members of the LAC used the opportunity to brief Minister Ferguson on a range of labour management issues, including implementation of the Occupational Safety and Health Act and the ratification of some International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions.

The Minister assured that he will address issues raised as well as implement some of the recommendations made.

“Coming out of this meeting, we will examine the recommendations and determine the way forward, so that when we meet in January, we should be able to say what we have done in taking on board these suggestions,” he said.

The LAC is a tripartite body that consists of the Ministry, the Jamaica Employers’ Federation and workers represented through the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions. Wednesday was the final meeting of the LAC for 2015. The group will next meet in January 2016.