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  • Mrs. Holness, who delivered the keynote address at the launch held at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in St. Andrew, said the document, titled ‘The Power of Choice – Reproductive Rights and the Demographic Transition’, emphasises the need for countries to recognise that the demographics of their populations are changing, and with that must come the appropriate responses.
  • “We must not just pay lip service to equality for women and girls, and at the same time, we must not allow our men and our boys to become marginalised and dysfunctional. We need all hands on deck to navigate the current change in the waters ahead… as we seek to create a society of choice where we can live, work, raise families, do business, then retire in style and comfort,” she added.
  • For his part, Director of the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), which partnered with UNFPA on the Report, Dr. Wayne Henry, said the document reflects the fundamental link between fertility decision-making and the changes in the growth, size, structure, and distribution of populations.

Jamaica’s Champion for the Caribbean Woman-Caribbean Child (CARIWAC) Initiative, the Most Hon. Juliet Holness, has endorsed the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) 2018 State of the World Population Report, which was officially launched on Thursday (November 8).

Mrs. Holness, who delivered the keynote address at the launch held at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel in St. Andrew, said the document, titled ‘The Power of Choice – Reproductive Rights and the Demographic Transition’, emphasises the need for countries to recognise that the demographics of their populations are changing, and with that must come the appropriate responses.

“Our plans must be flexible, while our governments must be sensitive, forward-thinking and responsible. We must make sure that all systems and services work for our people, and ensure that they are empowered to make the best choices at all stages of their lives,” she added.

This, Mrs. Holness pointed out, relates to their sexual and reproductive health, among other dynamics.

She contended that “rapid changes” emerging in Jamaica’s population structure and the anticipated responses support the Report’s underlying theme that ‘choice changes all… choices bring change’.

“The result is that we have more senior citizens in our midst than ever before in our history. Secondly, we have a more professionalised population… including more women who are educated and who have exhibited the choice to place profession before procreation. Partners have sought to advance their careers… and delay childbearing for financial stability or education or career advancement,” she noted.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Holness said Jamaica must examine various pieces of legislation and policy documents to ensure that they are “flexible enough to move us to the times ahead”.

“We must not just pay lip service to equality for women and girls, and at the same time, we must not allow our men and our boys to become marginalised and dysfunctional. We need all hands on deck to navigate the current change in the waters ahead… as we seek to create a society of choice where we can live, work, raise families, do business, then retire in style and comfort,” she added.

For his part, Director of the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), which partnered with UNFPA on the Report, Dr. Wayne Henry, said the document reflects the fundamental link between fertility decision-making and the changes in the growth, size, structure, and distribution of populations.