We have lost the spirit of Labour Day – Manchester stakeholders
Community involvement for Labour Day projects scheduled across the parish this year were considered underwhelming by stakeholders who believe the spirit of the day is dwindling.
The beautification of the greens, general cleaning, cutting of the lawn, and painting of the perimeter fence at the Cecil Charlton Park, along with the improvement of the New Green roundabout, was the main parish project this year.
However, Manchester Custos Garfield Green believes the number and scope of the projects completed need to better represent what Labour Day stands for.
“I don’t see a lot of pedestrian crossings and sidewalks being repainted ... . I would love to see us get together, with those who are responsible for the activities of the day, to not wait until Labour Day, even a week before, to prepare for parish project or town projects,” the custos said.
Green said that while all hope is not lost, it will take the efforts of the leader and the citizens to plan and execute bigger projects in the future.
Not only will these projects edify spaces, but according to commanding officer of the Manchester police, Superintendent Lloyd Darby, will play a part in the reduction of crime and violence and the maintenance of order.
“I remember back in the day, Labour Day had much more significance ... . I am calling for all of us leaders, whether at the national level or parish level to reignite that spirit of community to work together,” he said.
Darby added that the merriment that once capped off a full day of work has now been replaced with sorrow, with the risk of road crash deaths.
“As with any national holiday, we have to put our police out there to try and slow people down. On holidays, we have accidents resulting in deaths, historically, and so we just want persons to be cautious today and every day,” the parish commander said.
“There is really a kind of senselessness to some of the carnage that we are seeing, just because persons are not using the roads properly.”
Darby took the opportunity to remind citizens to play their part in cooperating with the police in curbing crime and violence.
“We need to re-establish the selflessness in the communities, because that selflessness will spread to other areas and help with crime reduction ... . Reigniting the spirit of working together goes a far way in bonding the communities together,” he said.
The police, in partnership with members of the Jamaica Defence Force and the Manchester Municipal Corporation, renovated and repainted sections of the Mandeville Police Station and its surroundings.