Angela Brown Burke, Press Releases

The PNP calls on Civil Society Groups to monitor Infirmaries

KINGSTON, Jamaica, November 30, 2017: The People’s National Party (PNP) welcomes the announcement by the Minister of Local Government, the Hon. Desmond McKenzie to rename the present infirmaries as adult residential care facilities. There has been general agreement by all local government advocates that this is an appropriate development. We note that the Minister has indicated the Government’s approval of amendments to the Poor Relief Act to abolish the Board of Supervision, and transfer those functions to the Ministry of Local Government. 

 

We remind the Minister that a central role of local authorities continues to be that of protecting the poor and vulnerable; that the municipal corporations are still the institutions best placed to do so, given their experience and expertise developed over the years.

 

The PNP will be monitoring this exercise and paying keen attention to the allocation of resources and physical improvement of these facilities, especially since we are convinced that a name change is not sufficient to provide the level of care required to residents in these facilities. 

 

The major issue will remain one of financial and other resources to provide an appropriate level of care. Whether these institutions are under the direct supervision of the Ministry or the local authority, there is no doubt that the Government of Jamaica must provide an effective social safety net to cushion the negative impact of the anaemiceconomic growth of the Jamaican economy. 

 

The PNP calls on all Mayors and Councillors as well as civil society to help monitor the standard of care, physical environment, and programmes of reintegration, which will be provided by these residential care facilities.