Trelawny MP says Youth Ministry has neglected the parish
Member of Parliament for South Trelawny Marisa Dalrymple Philibert has slammed the Ministry of Youth and Culture for not establishing a youth information centre in Trelawny.
At a meeting of the Human Resources and Social Development Committee of Parliament earlier this week, Philibert described as disgraceful the ministry's neglect of the youth in Trelawny.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth and Culture Sherrill O'Reggio Angus conceded that the parish was without a youth information centre but noted that there were plans to set up a centre in Trelawny.
She pointed out that youth information officers in neighbouring parishes provide services to young people across the parish of Trelawny.
However, a strident Dalrymple Philibert dismissed the assertions of the permanent secretary, declaring that no youth officers had been deployed in the parish. "I am saying without fear of contradiction, if you name your empowerment officers who are working in neighbouring parishes, none of us on either side of the divide will be able to tell you of any work that any of them has done in Trelawny."
Continuing, the South Trelawny MP said: "(In) North Trelawny, you have one of the greatest investments that this country has made, where ships are coming in. You have a ton load of young people in there that are unattached and not working that we don't want to become a source of harassment to tourists. There are so many things that the youth ministry should come in and teach those young people to do."
There are 11 youth information centres across the island.
Dayton Campbell, who chaired the committee in the absence of Rudyard Spencer, suggested that the ministry could introduce a mobile youth information centre that travels into some rural areas. He said that in the short term, this would solve some of the challenges faced by the ministry in setting up youth information centres in rural parishes.
The youth information centres are established to provide training in various areas, such as entrepreneurship, personal development, empowerment, counselling, behaviour modification, climate change and awareness, leadership, and advocacy.