Information Minister, Wilfred Abrahams, greets Information Officer, Joy-Ann Gill, during a tour of the Barbados Government Information Service yesterday. Looking on (left to right) are Senior Information Officer, Eyvette McClean; Permanent Secretary, Sandra Phillips; Director of Public Affairs in the Office of the Prime Minister, Pat Parris; and Chief Information Officer, Sharon Lynch. (C.Pitt/BGIS )

The Barbados Government Information Service (BGIS) is the number one source of Government information in Barbados and is pivotal to what is happening as a country going forward.

Minister of Home Affairs, Information and Public Affairs, Wilfred Abrahams, made this point following tours of the BGIS offices at Bay Street and in the Old Town Hall Building in Cheapside, St. Michael, yesterday.

He was accompanied by Permanent Secretary, Sandra Phillips; Chief Information Officer, Sharon Lynch; Deputy Chief Information Officer, Ian Inniss; and Director of Public Affairs in the Office of the Prime Minister, Pat Parris.

The Minister stressed the importance of government information, and that it needed to be communicated quickly and effectively.

“The BGIS is a pivotal part of that. You need to be the hub for disseminating government information.  You need to publicise what Government is doing.  The BGIS has to support Government’s agenda,” Mr. Abrahams stated.

Noting that the department was producing “good work”, which he was impressed with, he further issued a challenge to the staff to make the department the first point of contact for all government information over the next six months.

“Once it deals with Government, be it an update, a warning or a bulletin, it should come from us first,” he said.

He told staff that the department’s role had evolved over the years, and there was now need for Government’s news to be delivered immediately, rather than relying on traditional media. “The public wants to be informed,” he said.

Mr. Abrahams noted that unlike the traditional media, which competed for “sensational stories”, the BGIS was more focused and therefore needed to be more creative in its approach to the way it did business going forward. Meanwhile, he also gave staff the assurance that their concerns would be addressed.

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