WASHINGTON, DC – Jamaica is now in the process of implementing an International Migration and Development policy. This was disclosed by Jamaica’s Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, the Hon. Arnaldo Brown during the launch of the Mapping Jamaica’s Diaspora Project at a luncheon held at the Island Cuisine Restaurant in Baltimore, Maryland on Friday, August 15, 2014.
Minister Brown said the Migration policy seeks to streamline the issues of migration in all sectors of the economy and will track its impact and make policy decisions to support migrants and their families.
Turning to the Diaspora policy which is currently being developed under the supervision of the Ministry of Foreign Affair and Foreign Trade, Minister Brown said it aims to prescribe methods for increasing trade and investment linkages between Jamaica and the Diaspora as one of the key elements in developing national development goals.
The junior minister with responsibilities for Diaspora Affairs informed the gathering that both policies are being developed and should be ready to be tabled in Parliament when it reconvenes in September.
In launching the Mapping Jamaica’s Diaspora Project, Minister Brown urged members of the Jamaican community in Baltimore to go online and take the survey. He said the project which is expected to run for eighteen months and is being funded by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is geared towards identifying and creating a database of skills, interests and location of Diaspora members. Information gathered from the survey will enable the government to better serve the Diaspora and harness its potential for the benefit of the country.
The Minister pointed out that the project will allow the government to identify gaps which currently exist in its engagement with Jamaicans in the Diaspora as well as identify members with special skills and experiences which can be used in Jamaica as well as in special international roles to represent Jamaica.
He added that on completion of the Mapping project, Jamaicans in the Diaspora will be able to more readily access information about the government’s major development projects like the Logistic Hub Initiative, Agro Parks and the redevelopment of downtown Kingston in addition to obtain information on employment and investment opportunities.
Among those attending the launch was Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Stephen Vasciannie, Maryland House of Delegates Representative, Shirley Natham-Pulliam, President of the National Association of Jamaican and Supportive Organizations, (NAJASO), Rick Nugent, President of the Jamaica Association of Maryland (JAM), Noel Godfrey and President of the Jamaican American Bar Association (JABA), Ms. Joan Pinnock.
Minister Brown while in the USA had similar launches in Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Delaware.