Minister of Health, Hon. Rudyard Spencer, has lauded Public Health Inspectors for their ‘tremendous contributions’ to national development in the areas of public and environmental health.
“I would like to salute you all for your contributions to the health of citizens across Jamaica, and for being part of the bedrock of the Ministry of Health, protecting and maintaining health through rigorous monitoring of sanitation, food safety, water quality, vector control, port health and quarantine, training, public education, indoor air quality assessment, occupational health and waste disposal”, the Health Minister said, in a speech read by his Ministry’s Director of Health Promotion and Protection, Dr. Eva Lewis-Fuller.
Occasion was the opening of the 64th Annual Educational Conference and Exhibition of the Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors, which is being held at the Iberostar Beach Hotel in Rose Hall, Montego Bay, October 26 to 28. The theme of the conference is, “Securing environmental health compliance in an increasingly hostile environment: greater roles for education, science and technology”.
Mr. Spencer commended the Inspectorate for ‘staying the course and showing the dedication and commitment’ in carrying out their work.
Chief Justice of Jamaica Hon. Zaila McCalla addressing participants during the Opening Ceremony of the 64th Annual Educational Conference and Exhibition of the Jamaica Association of Public Health Inspectors, at the Iberostar Beach Hotel in Rose Hall, St. James Tuesday (October 26). The three-day conference (October 26-28) is being held under the theme, ‘Securing environmental health compliance in an increasingly hostile
environment: greater roles for education, science and technology’.
“We are indeed honoured to have such dedicated workers in the health sector and would be doing everything to increase the present cadre of approximately 300, as we are aware of the shortage,” he stated.
Mr. Spencer also noted that his Ministry has collaborated with the National Youth Service to roll out an auxiliary public health inspectorate programme, to help address the functions that can be carried out by lesser trained personnel.
“We are now in the process of selecting some 70 young persons, who will undergo training in a few months”, Minister Spencer said. He explained that they will be assigned duties such as basic sanitation and vector control, under the supervision of the Chief Public Health Inspectors and other senior inspectors in various communities across the island.
“We expect that the programme will go on for an initial period of two years and, if funding is available, then we might expand and extend it,” Mr. Spencer said.
Delivering the keynote address, Chief Justice of Jamaica, Hon. Zaila McCalla, called on Public Health Inspectors to be vigilant in ensuring that Public Health legislation is complied with at all times.
“Do not compromise the safety of our citizens, the community and the country at large, by doing an incomplete inspection. Think of the implications that failure to inspect or a careless inspection could have on the society,” she said.
“You must also continue to seek to educate the general public of the need to comply with the law. Citizens must come to realize that the law is designed to protect them and the environment. Citizens should be encouraged to be more vigilant and take greater responsibility in order to ensure their health and safety,” the Chief Justice urged.
She assured the Inspectors that the Judiciary was ready and willing to work with them to ensure greater effectiveness in the preservation and protection of the health of citizens.