Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Senator Jepter Ince (seated at right), in discussion with President of the??Congress of Trade Unions and Staff Associations of Barbados, Cedric Murrell??(left) and Executive Director of the Barbados Employers’ COnfederation, Tony Walcott, a the Week of Excellence 2012 programme.
(A. Miller/BGIS)

There is a promise from government that no sector of the Barbadian economy will be left out in the quest to achieve a developed status.

Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Finance, Senator Jepter Ince, gave this assurance while addressing the Week of Excellence 2012 programme.??

Under the theme Caring Corporations for Community Development: Working Together to Build a Better Society, it was held at the Grande Salle, Central Bank of Barbados, Tom Adams Financial Centre on Monday, February 20.

Emphasising government’s commitment to social and economic equity that embraced a mass-based participation approach, he said "the necessary appropriations will be undertaken to ensure that the more vulnerable in society will be placed in a position to take maximum advantage of the economic opportunities, to have access to key social services and other amenities to minimise the risk of being unduly disenfranchised".

Senator Ince noted that the objectives of the country’s social services must not be underestimated and disclosed that a modernisation of the sector must, among other things, encourage persons to accede to their prime potential; while promoting individual independence.?? He added that it must strengthen families and households by predominantly addressing issues of social and economic inequality, while creating a culture of inclusion and improving the life chances of children, persons with disabilities and the indigent in society.

"…The revitalisation of our social landscape is one which is necessary and crucial.?? The government has spent invaluable time seeking to empower communities as key to nation-building. The link between a productive economy and a stable society is the premise which any government can use as a measure to shield individuals, families and businesses from unwarranted social and economic conditions. It is certainly unthinkable for persons to assume that a country can sustain any significant success in fiscal or economic growth and development without the intent of its citizens to strive toward shared objectives," Senator Ince surmised.

Meanwhile, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank, Harold Codrington, spoke about the link between strong communities and the pace of development and pointed out that by taking care of one’s community, one also took care of the country as well.

"Community development, therefore, allows us to harness the energy of all of our people in helping Barbados to attain its maximum potential … Why should corporations care about community development??? [Because] the strength and viability of the corporation … depends critically on the well-being of the community.?? When there are problems in communities they can be manifested in the workplace through rising levels of sick leave, poor interpersonal relations and falling productivity," he noted.

Mr. Codrington suggested that efforts to create a better society must start in the workplace. "The corporation is well-placed to do so by interacting with its employees in ways that impact positively on the community.?? When the corporation helps its employees it is helping the community and itself," he observed.

Likewise, President of the Congress of Trade Unions and Staff Associations of Barbados, Cedric Murrell, said the conference’s theme signaled the need for greater dialogue on the opportunities and challenges likely to impact the development of the nation.

"As we look around, there is evidence of growing economic, social and environmental challenges that call for an urgent and creative response.?? It, therefore, underscores the point that there ought to be collective responsibility shown by government, the private sector and labour; these three social partners must, therefore continue to work together in order to achieve the transformation that is required," Mr. Murrell stressed.


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