National social protection policy being updated

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The Ministry of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment is making great strides in revising and updating the National Social Protection Policy and Action Plan (NSPPAP) 2022-2030.

The NSPP review is a key component of the Human Capital Resilience Project (HCRP),
whose implementation is led by the Ministry of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment with funding from the World Bank.

Recent developments such as climate change, pandemics and related and unrelated socio-economic shocks have had a significant impact on the socio-economic situation of all citizens, and more particularly vulnerable communities.

The aim of updating the NSPP is to ensure that it keeps up with the times and responds adequately to the risks people face.

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To this end, the Ministry of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment engaged the services of a consultant to update the 2015 policy to fully understand the current situation and develop adaptive responses. appropriate.

The contribution of state agencies and civil society organizations involved in social care and
protective services informed the review of the policy.

Over the past few months, the ministry, together with the social protection consultant, has conducted a number of consultations with technical officers from partner government agencies and a wide range of other key players in the sector.

On 05 May 2022, before a series of public consultations, the project was presented by the social protection consultant to the main stakeholders and the main implementing agencies, including the ministries of health, education, labor, planning, finance and the National Insurance Corporation (NIC).

The updated draft of the national social protection policy and action plan represents
The commitment of the Government of Saint Lucia (GOSL) to implement policies and programs aimed at bringing about socio-economic transformation and improving the livelihoods of its citizens.

This is in line with the government’s commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which speaks of reducing poverty and deprivation within households, as well as the various risks and vulnerabilities faced by the elderly, adults of working age, young people, children, women and people with disabilities. , which have a negative impact on their quality of life, while strengthening the resilience of communities in the face of natural disasters.

From May 17-25, members of the public will have the opportunity to review and provide their input on the revised National Social Protection Policy at island-wide community consultations.

According to project coordinator Juliana Daniel-Foster, given the scope and importance
of the national policy “it is of paramount importance that we engage the public to ensure that they are aware of the provisions set out in the policy and that they talk about it before the submission can be forwarded to Cabinet for final approval “.

Soufrière, Choiseul and Canaries are scheduled for May 17 at the Leisure Inn, Nouveau Développement Vieux Fort, followed by Gros Islet, Monchy, Babonneau, Castries Nord and Castries Central on May 18 at the Center Pastoral.

On May 19, residents of the Castries/Anse La Raye region will meet at Jon
Odlum Secondary School, Marigot. On May 24, residents of Vieux Fort and Laborie will gather at the NSDC in Vieux Fort. Consultations end May 25 with residents of Micoud and Dennery at Château Héritage in Dennery. All consultations begin at 5 p.m.

The public consultation schedule is accessible on the Department of Equity’s Facebook page and is broadcast on popular media channels.

The ministry urges the public, especially non-governmental organizations (NGOs), youth workers, faith-based organizations, the elderly and local community groups to come out and raise their voices and be reflected in this important activity.

Transportation will be made available to accommodate interested individuals to and from consultation locations.

Source: Ministry of Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment. Main image credit: Asael Peña (Unsplash.com)

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Joel C. Hicks