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  • Social Sector Development Specialist at the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), Charles Clayton, has said that a mindset change is essential if Jamaica is to solve its social problems.
  • Mr. Clayton made the statement at a recent JIS Think Tank session, where he highlighted the social aspects of Jamaica's Vision 2030 national development plan.
  • "A mindset change is necessary, if we are going to change our society for the better; the way we think and act must be addressed," he determined.

Social Sector Development Specialist at the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), Charles Clayton, has said that a mindset change is essential if Jamaica is to solve its social problems.

Mr. Clayton made the statement at a recent JIS Think Tank session, where he highlighted the social aspects of Jamaica’s Vision 2030 national development plan.

“A mindset change is necessary, if we are going to change our society for the better; the way we think and act must be addressed,” he determined.

He explained that there are differences in the thinking of people who manage to achieve positive developments in their country, and those in countries that don’t go very far.

“It is a wide range of issues that we have to address in the way people think, but we can start with the simple things, such as how we value ourselves, how we value our environment, country, and national symbols; whether or not we feel that we are a part of that process of change,” he argued.

Mr. Clayton said that societies produce the type of leaders that they are, “so if we don’t change the way we are, as a society, then we will not get the leadership that we need.”

Addressing the issue of crime and violence, Mr. Clayton said the Plan takes an integrated approach to identifying problems and implementing solutions.

“What we have done is to look at some of the factors contributing to crime: The availability of guns, the connection between the youth and the drug trade, the guns for drug trade, these are some of the associated variables,” he explained.

He said that the approach to changing the crime situation involves working to empower youths and communities, and disconnecting them from criminal elements.

“We are also trying to ensure that we have a modern correctional service system that focuses more on rehabilitation than on punishment,” he stated. “People come back out the current prison system the same or worse, but what is needed is to ensure that the system rehabilitates people,” he added.

Vision 2030 Jamaica is a national long-term development plan created by a wide cross section of stakeholders, including the Government, Opposition, public and private sectors, non-governmental organizations, and community/interest groups.

The Vision 2030 Jamaica national development plan can be viewed at www.pioj.gov.jm