Caribbean Labour Ministers meet to advance Decent Work Agenda

Labour Ministers and other high-level labour officials from the English- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean will convene at the Trinidad Hilton and Conference Centre, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago on 15-16 May 2007 for the Sixth Meeting of Caribbean Labour Ministers.

News | 15 May 2007
PORT OF SPAIN (ILO News) - Labour Ministers and other high-level labour officials from the English- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean will convene at the Trinidad Hilton and Conference Centre, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago on 15-16 May 2007 for the Sixth Meeting of Caribbean Labour Ministers.

Hosted jointly by the United Nation's International Labour Organization, Subregional Office for the Caribbean and the Ministry of Labour and Small and Micro Enterprise Development, Trinidad and Tobago, the meeting will focus on the role of Ministries of Labour in realizing the Decent Work Agenda for the Caribbean.

Senator The Honourable Danny Montano, Minister of Labour and Small and Micro Enterprise Development, Trinidad and Tobago, will deliver the keynote address at the opening ceremony on Tuesday 15 May 2007 at 8:30a.m.

The Decent Work Agenda, which strives for economic growth with equity through a coherent blend of social and economic goals, has found resonance as a development agenda in a number of international and regional fora. It has four pillars: providing opportunities for employment, ensuring respect for rights at work, providing social protection and promoting participation and social dialogue among governments and employers' and workers' organizations.

In October 2006, high-level representatives of governments, and employers' and workers' organizations of the region adopted the Tripartite Declaration and Plan of Action for realizing the Decent Work Agenda in the Caribbean at the ILO Tripartite Caribbean Employment Forum held in Barbados. Delegates resolved to advance decent work priorities in their national development agendas. The Sixth Meeting of Caribbean Labour Ministers will thus seek to explore ways in which the labour ministries can advance the Decent Work Agenda both at a regional and national level.

Discussions will also focus on social and labour issues of priority concern, including the challenges of managing labour migration and the free movement of labour within the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME) as well as the development of a CARICOM "Social Floor" of fundamental rights for workers operating under the CSME. Delegates will also be apprised of developments pertaining to the upcoming International Labour Conference of the ILO to be held from 30 May - 15 June 2007 in Geneva, Switzerland, and the XVth Inter-American Conference of Ministers of Labour to be held on 11-13 September 2007 in Trinidad and Tobago.

Other distinguished speakers at the opening ceremony will include Sir Roy Trotman, Worker Vice-Chairperson of the Governing Body of the ILO and President of the Congress of Trade Unions and Staff Associations of Barbados; Mr. Jean Maninat, Regional Director, ILO Regional Office for the Latin America and the Caribbean; Dr. Ana Teresa Romero, Director, ILO Subregional Office for the Caribbean; Mr. Carl Francis, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Small and Micro Enterprise Development; Mrs. Linda Besson, Executive Secretary/Treasurer, Caribbean Employers' Confederation; Mr. Lincoln Lewis, President, Caribbean Congress of Labour and Ms. Myrna Bernard, Director, Human Development, CARICOM Secretariat.