JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Approximately $9 billion has been spent to provide job opportunities for close to 60,000 persons under the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP), since its implementation three years ago.
  • In an interview with JIS News, Project Director for JEEP, Carolyn Gardner, said persons have been employed on various projects across the island, including the rehabilitation of roadways, bridges, drains and gullies, and upgrading of several community facilities, and sanitary conveniences at primary schools.
  • JEEP was officially launched by Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, on March 22, 2012.

Approximately $9 billion has been spent to provide job opportunities for close to 60,000 persons under the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP), since its implementation three years ago.

In an interview with JIS News, Project Director for JEEP, Carolyn Gardner, said persons have been employed on various projects across the island, including the rehabilitation of roadways, bridges, drains and gullies, and upgrading of several community facilities, and sanitary conveniences at primary schools.

She said JEEP, now in its fifth phase, has been fulfilling its mandate of providing employment for Jamaicans, while improving the infrastructure and social amenities of the country.

Phase five of the initiative got underway on June 29 and is scheduled for completion by the end of November.  Already, over 2,400 individuals islandwide have been employed at a cost of $385 million.

Ms. Gardner said works are being undertaken on projects under the Major Infrastructure Development Programme (MIDP) and “we also have projects involving the Tourism Enhancement Fund, and the construction of wooden houses (in collaboration with Food for the Poor) islandwide.”

Under the MIDP component, she informed, Members of Parliament receive $10 million each for projects in their respective constituencies.

Ms. Gardner informed that some of the projects have been completed while others are underway across other sections of the island.

 

Among the constituencies where works have been done are: Holland Corner and Newmarket bypass road in St. Elizabeth North West; construction of drains in Guy’s Hill, St. Catherine North East; and the patching of roads in Orangefield and Rodney Hall in North West St. Catherine.

A total of $930 million has been allocated for works across the 63 constituencies during the 2015/2016 financial year.  An additional $78.2 million is being spent on the rehabilitation of Parish Council roads.

Ms. Gardner told JIS News that members of the team and the various implementing agencies will continue to ensure that high-quality outcomes are delivered on the projects that are undertaken.

“When we go out and we are doing our road repairs, we are doing it well…so that our communities and people can benefit. So we are truly happy that we have buy-in from our stakeholders and we are really rolling ahead with that,” she said.

Ms. Gardner noted that several partners remain on board to ensure that the projects are successful and persons can be placed in a variety of areas. Some of the partners include: the Ministries of Education, Agriculture and Fisheries, Labour and Social Security, and the National Housing Trust.

JEEP is one of the Government’s strategies to counter chronic unemployment among Jamaicans of lower socio-economic groups. It provides employment for persons with special needs, as well as those with low skill levels.

The programme also seeks to transform communities through the development of infrastructure across the island.

JEEP was officially launched by Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, on March 22, 2012.