Barbados is in a season of change, and citizens have been urged not to be afraid of this development.
Minister of Labour, Senator Dr. Esther Byer Suckoo, made this observation as she addressed the 72nd Annual Delegates??? Conference of the Barbados Workers??? Union at Solidarity House, last Saturday.
Dr. Byer Suckoo stressed that Barbados??? success over the years was ???a monument to change???. Giving an illustration of how citizens had risen to the occasion in the past in spite of the odds, she explained that [Barbadians had achieved] ???change from slavery to being craftsmen of our fate; change from poverty to a country boasting a high human development index; change from illiteracy to having a highly skilled workforce; and the list goes on. Rather than shrink from the rising tide of change in our economy, our society, [and] our organisations, let us embrace the high seas and rough waves like champion surfers Brian Talma and Chelsea Tuach, enjoy the ride, and come out conquerors.???
The Minister encouraged all Barbadians to approach the season of change together and explore new opportunities to be greater and better. ???Let us talk about what we all want out of this and how we can achieve it ??? together. Ultimately, all of us???want the same thing – for Barbados to be better for us and our children. Let us forge a way. I believe where there is a will there is a way. It may be in the crafting of new arrangements, in the drafting of new legislation; in the formulation of new policies; in learning new approaches and techniques; or in the creating of new and better structures,??? she suggested.
She told the large audience that in this season of change there was still a role for the trade union, even though it might be modified. According to her, while some of the issues were still current, there were new ones which needed to be addressed.
She expressed the view that the union must ensure that it continued to be a key development partner as the country faced new social, economic and environmental challenges.
???I look forward to continuing to work with the BWU and with all of you at this crossroad, to make Barbados greater than ever??? It won???t be easy. That we know. It will take all the determination and courage we have. There may be opposition from those without, who don???t want change and from those within who don???t think it can happen.
???But, like the leaders of this great union, we will focus on the real issues, the needs of the people. The vision of their betterment will spur us on. Sometimes we may be fazed, for we are human, sometimes tending to relent, but then, shaking off what is behind you, pressing on. Not to make history. Not to make your mark. But to make a difference: Today. History will take care of itself,??? Dr. Byer Suckoo stressed.
The Delegates??? Conference continues this weekend.