Minister of Labour, Social Security and Human Resource Development, Senator Dr. Esther Byer Suckoo, has reiterated Government’s commitment to the tri-partite partnership and its contribution to the consultative process.
She made this observation last Saturday, while addressing the Barbados Employers’ Confederation’s (BEC) 60th Anniversary Awards Ceremony and Dinner at Apes Hill Country Club, St. James.
Senator Byer Suckoo said social dialogue between Government, the employers and the workers’ representatives, was critical to “fostering a healthy industrial relations climate as well as social cohesion and economic progress in Barbados”.
“Let us not lose sight of the fact that we have to continue our combined efforts not only for the sake of our economy but more importantly, for the people of this country who look to the leaders for confidence and assurance during difficult times. Additionally, let us not tear down our precious stability…because we have to continue to be a part of the solution to our country’s challenges or we may have to consider that we are part of the problem,” she insisted.
Highlighting the achievements of the BEC, that includes the publication of the booklet: Dealing with AIDS in the Workplace: Guidelines for Managers and Supervisors, and HIV and AIDS: Discrimination in the Workplace, the Minister lauded the BEC for playing a major role in the maintenance of a healthy industrial relations climate and has supported Government’s mandate to provide decent and productive work for all.
Senator Byer Suckoo also commended the BEC for playing an active role in committees, boards and other labour-related activities that supported the monitoring and development of the workforce and for utilising resources offered by the Ministry of Labour, Social Security and Human Resource Development and other agencies to effect capacity development in the private sector.
She also credited the BEC for taking advantage of the training opportunities offered by the Employment Training Fund administered by her Ministry via the Technical and Vocational Education Council.
Through the Competency-based Training Fund, under the aegis of the Inter-American Development, Bank, 894 persons in the construction industry have attained certification in management, occupational safety and health and vehicular operations.
“I laud the Barbados Employers’ Confederation not only for building resilience and surviving the last 60 years, in fact…striving through those 60 years but deciding to use your hub to influence the decision making to be a part of the change of what you want to see. In that regard, I congratulate you for being a valued and vocal partner in the social partnership and a key contributor to labour relations and social dialogue in general,” Senator Byer Suckoo underlined.
During the evening’s proceedings a number of long-standing council members, outstanding employees, past presidents and past executive directors were recognised, while awards were handed out to persons who had contributed to the success of the organisation over the last six decades.