Recap: Forum With Senator Newby

JAMPACT’s Think Tank Committee hosted an interactive forum with Senator Warren Newby, Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Information, Culture, Youth and Sports, at the Office of the Consul General of Jamaica on Friday January 16, 2009. The Senator spoke about issues affecting Jamaica’s youth and the solutions that his office is proposing to implement in the near future and beyond. His speech was followed by a spirited question and answer session with the attendees. A cocktail reception followed.
Some Key Points Highlighted by Mr. Newby:

  • The age group 18-24 years old has the greatest potential but is the most at risk in Jamaica.
  • The Senator also discussed the nexus between the increase in criminal activity and the problems facing Jamaica’s youth.
  • The Ministry’s work will extend its reach even to matters surrounding  prenatal care , with the philosophy that early childhood development is a key component to long term healthy development.
  • The Ministry will be working with the Ministry of Education on the policy to extend school leaving age, to assure that school leaving is matter of competence and not just age.
  • The Ministry is seeking to combine the efforts of a wide cross-section of youth service providers through the multi-sectoral unit.
  • Youth information centers are being created across Jamaica to provide valuable resources for young people.
  • Senator Newby mentioned that his office will be a resource for people to link to various non-profits, so that Jamaicans in the Diaspora can get involved in helping Jamaica’s youth.

Due to the high level of interest in this important topic, we will be continuing the discussion on JAMPACT’s Facebook discussion forum.  We will also submit JAMPACT member’s questions and comments to Senator Newby directly. For more information, or to submit questions/suggestions to the Senator, please contact [email protected].

Special thanks to our sponsor, Laten’s Restaurant, for providing refreshments for the event.