Comments invited on Green Paper for revised policy for senior citizens

Monday, September 24, 2018

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — The public is being invited to provide feedback and comments on the Green Paper for the revised National Policy for Senior Citizens, which is on the websites of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security and the Jamaica Information Service (JIS).

Portfolio Minister Shahine Robinson issued the invitation during the launch of Senior Citizens’ Week on Friday at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel.

She said Parliament is expected to complete the review of the policy, which will allow for improved social protection measures for seniors, in the coming year.

The minister said the policy will be the benchmark for establishing and maintaining a productive, healthy, meaningful environment for citizens, and it will redound to the benefit of seniors in an all-inclusive way.

“We are confronted with the challenges of an ageing population, which will constantly require the Government to create policies and programmes to cater to the needs of seniors,” she said.

The revised National Policy for Senior Citizens has established six major policy goals — increased participation of senior citizens in all spheres of the society; improved income security and social protection coverage for senior citizens; adequate and supportive health and welfare systems for senior citizens; improved independence, security and safety for senior citizens; enhanced family support systems and community solidarity from interaction with senior citizens; and strengthened institutional and infrastructural networks for partnership and collaboration.

Meanwhile, the minister noted that the National Council for Senior Citizens (NCSC) will, in the upcoming year, be establishing a national registry for senior citizens.

“This exercise will complement our efforts through the national policy in streamlining the agenda conducive to their growth and development,” she said.

Concurrent with that, she said the team is also seeking to strengthen generational connectivity, through sensitisation workshops with some 800 secondary and post-secondary students, on retirement and lifestyle planning.

Robinson noted that the council is working to promote active ageing through a range of activities, in particular through the training of 273 seniors over the past year in basic computer and information technology (IT) skills.

She said the NCSC also staged senior citizen entrepreneurial empowerment workshops across all parishes, to provide small business management skills to senior citizens.

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