Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, is calling on more private sector companies to offer internships and apprenticeships for young people.
“We need more employers on board. We have to continue to dialogue with our private sector to say ‘this is a critical plan to ensure that we drive down the number of young people that we have that are unemployed’,” he said.
Mr. Green was speaking at the Poverty Reduction Programme’s (PRP) Youth Forum at Mona Visitors’ Lodge in St. Andrew on Thursday (January 10) under the theme: ‘Bridging the Gap… Solutions for Youth Unemployment’.
Managing Director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), Omar Sweeney, in his remarks, said the staging of the forum provides opportunity for discussion aimed at addressing youth unemployment.
“Based on the latest findings from the Planning Institute of Jamaica’s Economic and Social Survey, the National Unemployment Rate for 2017 was 11.7 per cent. However, the youth unemployment rate for the same period was recorded 28 per cent, which is more than double the national rate. Therefore, any kind of social intervention that can help to bridge the gap is always a welcome initiative,” he noted.
A community-based initiative, funded jointly by the Government of Jamaica and the European Union (EU), PRP has the overall objective of empowering residents of vulnerable communities to achieve their fullest potential and contribute to the attainment of a secure, cohesive and just Jamaican society.
These outcomes are consistent with goals one and two of Vision 2030, Jamaica’s National Development Plan.
PRP, which is being implemented by JSIF, got underway in 2001 and is slated to end in 2020.
By: Ainsworth Morris