PM launches Na­tional Youth Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil

Jamaica Gleaner - - INTERNATIONAL NEWS -

THE GOVERN­MENT yes­ter­day launched the coun­try’s first ever Youth Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil of Ja­maica. The Coun­cil com­prises 16 youth who will serve for the 2016-2018 pe­riod.

Speak­ing at the launch at Ja­maica House, Prime Min­is­ter An­drew Hol­ness said the new group em­bod­ies the Govern­ment’s com­mit­ment to treat the youth as full and equal part­ners in the de­ci­sion-mak­ing process.

The Prime Min­is­ter said the Govern­ment whole­heart­edly sup­ports the devel­op­ment of the coun­try’s youth and will place it as a key com­po­nent in the na­tional devel­op­ment strat­egy.

“It is not just about talk­ing; it is about ac­tual re­sults and hav­ing or­gan­i­sa­tions such as the Na­tional Youth Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil,” he em­pha­sised.

Ac­cord­ing to Hol­ness, young peo­ple rep­re­sent a sig­nif­i­cant seg­ment of the pop­u­la­tion that will play a ma­jor role in Ja­maica as it adapts to many of the chal­lenges such as cli­mate change and nat­u­ral dis­as­ters.

He fur­ther added, “We value the pos­i­tive con­tri­bu­tions of our youth. They are the change agents and need to play a di­rect role in shap­ing and in­flu­enc­ing pro­grammes and poli­cies that will af­fect them. It is im­por­tant that they are en­gaged and their voices are heard.”

Hol­ness re­vealed that the Coun­cil will help to fa­cil­i­tate di­a­logue be­tween young peo­ple and govern­ment min­istries, de­part­ments and agen­cies. For the pe­riod 2016-17, the fo­cus will be on the achieve­ment of its ob­jec­tives in re­la­tion to the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion, Youth and In­for­ma­tion and its de­part­ments and agen­cies. The work of the Coun­cil will be sub­se­quently ex­panded to con­sider other poli­cies and pro­grammes across govern­ment.

The Youth Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil is chaired by UWI grad­u­ate Aubrey Ste­wart.

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