Lawson, Clunis top household workers of the year
"I just feel great and overwhelmed," said Michael Lawson after he was declared the overall male winner in the third staging of the GraceKennedy Heather Little-White Household Worker of the Year Award, held at the Terra Nova All-Suite Hotel.
"It feels good to know that a man can become the top male household worker. I want males to rise above the stigma and understand that work is work, once you can do it," Lawson said.
Lawson was the watchman while the house of his current employer was being built. He was kept on at the property as the handy man after its completion. However, six years ago after the household worker left, Lawson became the jack of all trades, a decision he has not regretted over the years.
Lawson received $300,000 from GraceKennedy, $25,000 worth of gift vouchers from Hi-Lo Food Stores, a $30,000 savings accounts from First Global Bank Limited and a trophy.
He beat four shortlisted nominees including Earnestar Smith, Herman Williams and Denham Coke, who took the first runner-up spot.
Meanwhile, Millicent Clunis received the top female household worker award. Clunis, dubbed 'Matlock' by her employers because of her ability to always solve the mystery of missing items, was ecstatic following the presentation.
"I was surprised that I won this year. I entered last year and did so again this year. But I had no idea that I would have won the top award this year. I feel so overwhelmed," Clunis said.
She also received $300,000 from GraceKennedy, $25,000 in gift vouchers from Hi-Lo Food Stores, a $30,000 savings accounts from First Global Bank Limited and a trophy. She won over Cherrilene Case, Elaine Thompson and Elizabeth Watson-Warren, who was declared the first runner-up.
Watson-Warren and Coke were each presented with $200,000, a $20,000 savings account from First Global Bank and trophies.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness, who delivered the keynote address, congratulated the winners and lauded GraceKennedy for implementing the Heather Little-White Household Worker of the Year Award, noting that it is a good demonstration of corporate social responsibility by the company.
"It doesn't matter your station or your position, what is important is your commitment, your honesty and your integrity. In Jamaica today, we must recognise the work of household workers as a profession," Holness said.