Recruitment age limit increased for farm work programme
THE maximum recruitment age limit for the Overseas Farm Workers Programme has been adjusted from 40 to 45 years.
Making the announcement on Friday, Labour and Social Security Minister Derrick Kellier said the adjustment is as a result of the recognition that there are many very able-bodied people over the previous cut-off age of 40 who work harder than some people in their 20s.
Kellier was addressing a recruitment exercise for workers for the Canadian and United States Farm Workers Programmes at Montego Bay Community College in St James.
Minister Kellier said the adjustment is not breaking or bending any rules, and will give more people an opportunity to participate in the programme in order to better their standard of living. The minimum age limit of 21 years will remain.
Meanwhile, he told the throng of potential recruits that the team of liaison officers working with the Overseas Farm Workers Programme has been doing a very good job under sometimes adverse weather conditions.
"I have been out there in the field to see them. They have to go out in the cold... in the snow... in some very serious conditions to look work for our people. When you get to Canada and the United States you will be under their control and they will inform and educate you on the do's and don'ts of the programme. Your liaison officer is your first call... anything you need to know, they are there to advise you," he said.
The Ministry of Labour and Social Security is recruiting 3,500 workers for the Canadian and United States Farm Work Programme with the majority of them scheduled for placement at the start of 2015.
Regional recruitment sessions have been staged in Kingston, Manchester, and St James with over 4,000 people attending.