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Growth & Jobs | Wanted : More women in construction

Published:Friday | September 15, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia Grange (third left), and Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Daryl Vaz (second left), participate in the ground-breaking ceremony for The Lofts Apartments, on Arthur Wint Drive, in St Andrew, last Tuesday. Others (from left) are Project Manager for the development, Evon Foster; Member of Parliament for South East St Andrew, Julian Robinson; Chairman of West Indies Home Contractors (WIHCON) Limited, Peter Melhado; Chairman of the ICD Group, Joseph Matalon; and Managing Director of WIHCON, Delroy Alcott.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange has called for more women to be employed in the construction industry.

Addressing a groundbreaking ceremony for The Lofts Apartments on Arthur Wint Drive in St Andrew, last Tuesday, Grange said that fewer than 5,000 women were hired in the industry, which employs more than 119,000 persons.

"We have to change that as we work to build Jamaica. In this mission, we cannot afford to overlook the economic potential of half of our country's population," Grange told the audience.

She said that action taken by the community-based Construction Collective in 1983 has enabled women to gain notable qualifications in construction from the Vocational Training Development Institute and other institutions.

Grange pointed out that since the destruction of many houses by Hurricane Gilbert in 1988, more disaster-resistant homes have been built.

Meanwhile, minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Dr Horace Chang, said that with expansion taking place in several areas of commerce, The Lofts project is a "noteworthy" addition to the Corporate Area.

Chang, in his speech read by minister without portfolio in the ministry, Daryl Vaz, stressed that the Government was entering a number of private-public partnerships to ensure that Jamaicans have access to affordable houses.

The 128-unit development is being done by West Indies Home Contractors Limited.