The sterling work of the National Employment Bureau (NEB) in meeting the needs of Barbados’ labour force has come in for high praise from Minister of Labour, Social Security and Human Resource Development, Senator Dr. Esther Byer Suckoo.
She lauded the institution today while delivering the feature address at a breakfast meeting to sensitise stakeholders about the proposed transition of the NEB to the Barbados Employment and Career Counselling Service, at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre.
Senator Byer Suckoo told her audience that the NEB had served the needs of citizens for decades and its offerings had evolved from a series of “disconnected services and programmes” that ranged from youth employment and nursing selection, to an entity that undertook major programmes that “led to an improvement in the quality of life of thousands of Barbadians”.
She disclosed that despite the successes of these programmes, which saw the migration of hundreds of skilled women in the 1960’s to work in the health services sector in the United Kingdom, and the emigration of workers in the agricultural sectors in the United States and Canada, the entity was on the hunt for additional opportunities for Barbadians.
“We are, however, diligently pursuing other avenues of opportunity in both local and overseas markets. Recently, for example, I met with a national association of farmers in the USA, making them aware of the high quality of the Barbadian workforce…to reactivate agricultural job opportunities for Barbadians. Employers are enthusiastic about the level of education and training our workers have compared to job seekers from other countries,” the Senator underscored.
The Minister of Labour pointed out that the NEB was a vital institution in times of high youth unemployment and it also helped persons “find their way in the world; achieve a desired standard of living; and contribute to home and society”.
“[It] is truly a key social and development agency,” she noted.