Thursday, August 31, 2006 

Human Trafficking: Looking into Legislations and Practices

Human Trafficking is a growing issue that involves many aspects with the way a government position its action plans to address the conditions behind the problem.

And to fully comprehend the factors linked with this phenomenon requires direct harmonization in policy and research capacity, to strengthen the impacts of actions taken in practices.

If Human Trafficking is classified as a human rights violation that evolves along the denials of basic rights in education, health, decent work, security and justice, those elements call for an overhaul of existing interventions and regulations to confront the root-causes of the problematique. And by looking into the impacts and results of some legislations for policy-makers it could be an interesting shift in thinking, if of course weighing the relationships between poverty and human trafficking, and the ways to provide policy and practices with appropriate tools to tackle these two intermingled issues and their impacts on vulnerable groups through sustained exposures to deprivation and exploitation.



Thursday, August 31, 2006

Education and catastrophe
H.G. WELLS once wrote, “Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.”

Each year there is a sort of pageantry whenever the results for the SSEE, the CSEC, CAPE and the A-level Examinations are announced.

Full Editorial


Wednesday, August 30, 2006 

*In regards to capacity building in public information about the threat of Avian and Pandemic flu, the IDB is hosting a conference (August 31, 2006) that will target members of the press, communication professionals, and specialists for the Caribbean and Latin-American zone.



August, 29 - 10:25 AM

Cautions on Monetary Fund's intent to reduce Dominican Public Admin

Santo Domingo.- Public administration consultant Raymundo Amaro Guzman cautioned against International Monetary Fund's (IMF) suggestion to reduce the scope of the National Public Administration Office (ONAP), could place State public workers' jobs in peril.

Full Article


Tuesday, August 29, 2006 

What a Piece…

A recent article raised my eyebrows and I was shaken to read these perspectives about the relationships between climate change and future poverty levels for Latin-America and the Caribbean.


“latin-America and the Caribbean face a future of devastation and poverty as climate change continues to worsen extreme weather levels in the region, it has been claimed”.

Now letting the heat cool off a bit these issues bring to the forefront the whole paradigms liaised to pollution and environment as socially constructed dynamics.

Questions: How governments should tackle this pending phenomenon? Can it be approached through the implementation of restrictions/regulations and taxations?


Through increased focus upon the expansion of community driven programs as ways to leverage inter-societal and relational perspectives to strengthen wellbeing, social capital, improve the quality of life, and tackle environmental protection?




Antigua & Barbuda: Taking Head-on ICT and business Development

"There is a direct relationship between the rate of economic and social development and the accessibility and affordability of technology. The use of ICTs is integral to the successful development of any business, Government business or Private Sector business," Dr. Mansoor says

This statement translates the government’s stance to expand ICTs and link up economic growth with balanced business models. By launching a public consultation about these issues, the Ministry of Information can be credited to take bold steps toward the dissemination of its national policy re ICT. And certainly, as part of this process there will be gains as to provide best practices vis-à-vis planning and regulations, and the role of ICT as a contributor to growth, labor quality and productivity.

The consultation kicks-off on August 31, 2006, Jolly Beach Resort, and for further insights click here.


Netherlands Antilles policy towards the Caribbean is one of committed neighbour

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

WILLEMSTAD, Curacao: In preparation for a trade mission of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Curacao to Barbados during the first week of September, State Secretary of Finance, Alex Rosaria, recently delivered a speech about the policy of the Government towards the Caribbean.

Full Article


Monday, August 28, 2006 

The Millennium Development Goals: A Latin America and Caribbean Perspective

This publication by the UNDP assembles the latest results and trackings toward the MDG goals for Latin-America and the Caribbean.

The document provides readers with an analysis about the trends and futures for the MDGs in the region by highlighting a methodological approach that combines the use of cross-national analyses, country classification based on per capita income levels to complement other indicators about regional living standards. This is a significant analytical work paving the ways for harmonized research techniques and data gatherings where some variables as children under-nutrition, primary schooling are also taken into consideration in order to reflect and broaden the scope of monitoring & evaluation exercises along with the specificities of Latin-American and Caribbean countries.


Sunday, August 27, 2006 

*The information provided below come late for any registration for the upcoming session of the Oxford Course 2006, on Human Development set for September.

Nonetheless they migth prove handy for the next session scheduled in September 2008.




The course is jointly organized by the National Human Development Report (NHDR) Unit - Human Development Report Office (HDRO), the Department of International Development at the University of Oxford (Queen Elizabeth House) and the Human Development and Capability Association (HDCA). It will be held 10-23 September at Magdalen College, Oxford, UK.

The 2006 course has been filled. This year, we received well over 350 applications for the 50 available spots. Since we had such a large pool of applicants, we were unable to accept scores of extremely well-qualified professionals, and the decision-making process was extremely difficult. The wish to ensure geographic balance, gender balance, and representation from a wide variety of types of institutions in the course were important considerations in the selection process. The course is held every other year, and will be next offered in September 2008.

The course will draw on the extensive intellectual resources of Oxford, as well as the practical experience of leading analysts from international development agencies and institutions.

Contact - 2006

Kristen Lewis
Human Development Report Office, UNDP
304 East 45th Street, 12th floor
New York, NY 10017, USA
Fax: (212) 906-5161



COMMON SENSE & EVIDENCE: Health equals wealth


"Doctors are always working to preserve our health and cooks to destroy it, but the latter are the more often successful." Denis Diderot (1713 – 1784)

"Every healthy man is king." (Gaelic proverb)

"Health is better than wealth." (English proverb)

Full Article


Saturday, August 26, 2006 

Hooray for that One!

While chasing the truth over the internet I was glad a few minutes ago to bump into a document by JASPEV’s Technical Working Group (TWG) which is a Jamaican think tank tracking progress in social development for the country.

As some of you will see, this document named: “Annual Progress Report 2003 on National Social Policy Goals”, is not an outdated one, but rather part of an ongoing exercise in Monitoring and Evaluation gearing toward the release of the 2005 review. And as part of this process the analysis was pushed further by integrating a gender analysis (updated in April 2006) in its core, in order to demonstrate and link up government policies with gender dynamics, and indicators to measure progress in social development. This is an interesting initiative that will certainly enlarge discussion, in the comparisons of composite measures in gender inequality with other ongoing works about the GDI (Gender Development Index), GEM (Gender Empowerment Measure) and policy responses vis-à-vis the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), PRSPs among others.



*In an effort to push and enhance capacity building in education, learning and training, a workshop by the Virtual University for Small States of the Commonwealth (VUSSC) is taking on ICT and content development as tools to promote and tackle various aspects in open learning sources, distance learning; and how access to technology could be integral part of strategies to sustain growth and social inclusion for small states.



Dancing to the music of heritage: Conservation and Caribbean cultural investment

Saturday, August 26, 2006

by Clarence E Pilgrim
We are "Embracing our heritage"
And as a beacon it shines throughout the world
Yes the Caribbean has a never ending supply
Of talent and brains more valuable than gold.
Verse in the CARIFESTA song: by Andrew " Murray" Hendrickson


Indian envoy to help screen work permits

published: Saturday August 26, 2006

Minister of Labour and Social Security, Derrick Kellier, has solicited the assistance of Indian High Commissioner to Jamaica, Ambassador K.L. Agrawal, in the pre-screening process for prospective work permit applicants from India.

Full Article

Thursday, August 24, 2006 

To Attack Poverty is not A Mere Planning Exercise

When concentrating on a broad approach in Poverty Reduction Strategies, governments have to weigh numerous aspects embedded with political and social dynamics and the adaptation of those components with the functionings of market mechanisms. If approaching matters of reforms without adequate commitment to the development of social opportunities, we can witness some discrepancies within the process of development, and its approach to liberalization schemes. In fact, issues that are clearly pertinent with the terms and forms of planning to execute budget allocations and public expenditures for social investments, and education programming, see here.
Amidst these patterns and the relationships between market mechanisms and public goods, arguments about the latter, can effectively support the benefits associated with the expansion of education and literacy as means to strengthen communal benefits and enhance economic progress and social change; but also pin-point to the adaptation of the former by scrutinizing its regulations when it comes to economic openness, and the relevance of its institutional lay-outs.



Caribbean women living with HIV – Part 2

Thursday, August 24, 2006

by Dr Sonjia Kenya
The Caribbean has not been spared the ravages of HIV/AIDS which has had a devastating impact on women in the region. The World Health Organization's 2005 update found the Caribbean with the second highest HIV prevalence in the world, after sub-Saharan Africa.

Full Commentary

Wednesday, August 23, 2006 

From Limited Exposures to Full… Full Public Disclosure

How is that for a surprise! Yes indeed, the World Bank has made available and public, information about its loan operations and borrowing countries.

In the database, the public at large will be happy to find financial details about projects, sector lending, credits, grant disbursements, and the list goes on and on….

*So here we go, Country Aggregate Report


Youth and Issues of Capacity Building and Advocacy for AIDS Prevention Programs

From 17-19 August 2006 an initiative under the Umbrella of the Mini-Grant Project (MGP) of the CARICOM Youth Ambassador Initiative took place in Antigua.

Well, as a significant step into the strengthening and capacity building of youth leadership in sustainable development, this workshop/gathering has added up some momentums to sustain innovative approaches in development, by positioning common concerns with “Quality of Life”, and programmatic applications toward the assessment of people’s living conditions.



Wednesday, August 23, 2006 - Philipsburg, St Maarten, N.A.

As a Community

The announcement that St. Maarten will get its own Security Plan comes at a time when concern about crime is high, with an unprecedented dozen deaths due to violence so far this year. How exactly the plan backed by the Dutch Government will work out remains to be seen, but a sum of 55 million guilders could in any case help provide resources local law enforcement has been lacking.

Full Editorial


The Search for the CXC Results

I know that some of you guys out there have been preoccupied with the results for the 2006 CXC examinations. So, if it can be of any help….

*Information on Examinations from the Caribbean Examination Council



Buzzing over Nurses’ Training and Capacity Building

In what seems to be an overhaul toward employees’ retention programs, and skills assessment for human resources management and capacity building, the PM of Dominica, Roosevelt Skerrit has highlighted a national policy agenda to address the shortage of Nurses for the country. For the past years Dominica has been confronting an acute shortage of labor in the nursing field.

Thus, a phenomenon which brings to the surface some issues about the adaptation of its labor market vis-à-vis certain incentive systems to strengthen the economy, and at the same time guarantee delivery of some public services to sustain sectoral activities.
In the case of the health-care sector, these perspectives come closer to matters of choices to guide public expenditures, and strike the right balance for economic development, and sustained access between the provision of medical care, and high quality standards in health services. These elements open a broad landscape to conduct discussions about public policy and the dynamics and determinants that are rooted between equity and efficiency.


Tuesday, August 22, 2006 

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Nutrition Assistance Program beneficiaries won’t pay sales taxes

SAN JUAN (AP) – The beneficiaries of the Nutrition Assistance Program (PAN by its Spanish acronym) won’t have to pay the 1.5% city tax, Gov. Aníbal Acevedo Vilá said Monday.

''I can tell you that those thousands and thousands of families who depend on and receive PAN benefits can rest assured that we won’t jeopardize those funds. We’ll make everything we can so that municipal governments abide by what constitutes a federal mandate,” he said in a press conference.

Full Article


Signed, Sealed and… Delivered!!!

“The project will help make international remittance services more secure and efficient,” said MIF Team Leader Federico de Arteaga. “This will be achieved by promoting greater transparency and consumer protection, an improved payment system infrastructure for small cross-border payments, a more sound legal and regulatory framework, greater competition and market access, and more developed risk management systems.”

The IDB through its Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) has approved the deployment of technical cooperation with central banks, and the disbursement of a US$ 1,759,000 grant to strengthen and promote General Principles for Latin-America and Caribbean Remittances.
As a critical development, the application or implementation of such framework comes just in time to broaden future prospects for remittance flows, and their social and economic impacts on receiving countries.
It goes without saying that the needs to address matters of social exclusion for the region, and also expanding access to economic opportunities are major catalysts to position remittances within an adapted regulatory framework, and an enhanced financial architecture.

This announcement can be a good starting point to tackle and address the transfers and dissemination of remittances by taking into consideration broad-scale development initiatives, and the adaptation of banking systems, i.e., micro-finance institutions to address the needs of the poor, reduce transaction costs and leverage community developments.



*SPAW COP IV, Jamaica, Montego Bay, Nov. 2006.



Evaluation of World Bank Support
for Primary Education

Over the past 15 years, primary education projects in developing countries gave high priority to increasing enrollments in primary schools. Much less attention was directed to the crucial issue of whether children are actually learning. Of the primary education projects funded by the World Bank, only 20 percent have an explicit objective to help children improve learning outcomes including such basic skills as reading and writing. Some 90 percent of the projects support quality improvements, usually in terms of better educational inputs such as books and teacher training, but only about 35 percent target and track improved student learning as made evident by, for example, better reading, writing and mathematical skills.

For the evaluation, IEG reviewed over 700 primary education projects from 1990 onward. According to IEG, 69 percent of World Bank projects designed to improve access to education succeeded in achieving their expansion goals. During the past 15 years, net enrollment rates increased in developing countries from about 82 percent of the relevant age group to about 86 percent. Enrollment expansion has generally come through supply-side interventions such as new schools and classrooms within easy walking distance, hiring more teachers, and activating community support. Governments have also increased demand by eliminating school fees and providing girls scholarships.

To Continue Reading the Report


Monday, August 21, 2006 

And In the News.....

IDBAmerica Scolarship Competition

IDBAmerica, the magazine of the Inter-American Development Bank, invites University students in Latin America and the Caribbean to participate in the third IDBAmerica Scolarship Competition by submitting a research article. The competition is open to post-secondary students between the ages of 18 and 30 currently residing in one of the IDB's borrowing countries. The original article should be no more than 1500 words and must describe a successful initiative (in the country of residence) dealing with a problem in the fields of health, education, violence, environment, corruption, employment, governance or any other economic or social field. Furthermore, the initiative must be run by a local or national government agency, private companies, non-governmental organizations, civic or religious groups. Submission deadline is December 15, 2006.
Or send an email to:


Economist: Govt not rushing to borrow
Monday, August 21 2006

POSITIVE AFFIRMATION of Trinidad and Tobago’s international credit ratings do not mean that Government will rush to borrow money from any foreign financial institution. This was the view expressed Thursday by Dr Lester Henry, a lecturer in economics at the University of the West Indies’ St Augustine campus.

Full Article


How Can We Talk about a New Paradigm in Development approaches for Cuba?

Over the last couple of days, many of us have heard or read diverse speculations re the latest changes that have affected Cuba, with the “temporary” transfer of power from “Fidel” to his brother “Raul”, see here.

In the lights of those recent developments, futures for Cuba still remain opaque as the country keep experiencing steep economic decline in a process that can be summed up as de-development. As a matter of fact, given the dire economic realities lingering over the country these due to geopolitical and macro-economic factors that have created unbalances in growth and development, I cannot help thinking about the prospects linked with new structural linkages to reposition development assistance, and funding. Are these Myths or realities? These questions or perspectives evolve within a framework that call for more inquiries into the process of international regulatory frameworks, and the current nature of global economic governance under which the role of development policy have to weigh the external factors, and the structural patterns behind funding in development projects.



Migrants and HIV, a wake up call for the Caribbean

Monday, August 21, 2006

TORONTO, Canada - Policymakers are being warned to be mindful of the health implications of the increasing movement of people from the poorer to the richer countries of the Caribbean. Although no studies have been conducted on the issue, the high prevalence of HIV in the region and particularly among the poorer countries is cause for concern, experts say.

Full Article

Friday, August 18, 2006 

OECS HAPU recommends urgent attention to reduce attrition involving persons with HIV/AIDS
August 18th, 2006

OECS Member Countries are experiencing an increasing rate of attrition among persons living with HIV and Aids. (Attrition speaks to the gradual wearing away of morale and the powers of resistance by persistent attacks.)

Dr. James St. Catherine, Coordinator of the OECS HIV and AIDS Project Unit (OECS HAPU) is advocating that OECS Member countries tackle the increasing attrition rate.

Full Story


Universal Access to Care, HIV/AIDS Prevention and Social Change

With the 16th International AIDS Conference underway in Toronto, CA, it has been encouraging to see that Caribbean leaders are embracing the development of a comprehensive agenda to tackle the AIDS pandemic. As a matter of fact, numerous calls have been raised to support the integration of a strategic vision gearing toward the provision of universal access for HIV/AIDS preventions (see here).
These latest developments are essential to follow up, as for the Caribbean region such perspectives align the process of health sector reforms within a paradigm for social change.
These transformational dynamics highlight the expansion of understandings vis-à-vis certain typologies in health systems as structures that should connect with social, economic and political variables in order to conceptualize and develop more inclusive approaches in development, and human-rights based practices.
For such archetypes introduce on one hand the capacity to address matters of exclusion and inequalities, while on the other hand providing adjustments in access to care with the policy responses needed to map out the needs of marginalized groups.

And in more coverage…..

*Funding to support the strengthening of communication campaigns and Capacity Building

*And here

*The WFP “Food and health Program” in Haiti

Thursday, August 17, 2006 

Douglas: Caribbean youngsters still careless about HIV/AIDS
Thursday August 17 2006

TORONTO, Canada (CMC) – St. Kitts/Nevis Prime Minister Dr. Denzil Douglas Tuesday said greater efforts would be needed to get young people of the Caribbean adopt preventive measures against the deadly HIV/AIDS virus.

Full Article



A Tale of Human Security in Haiti (Part II)

I posted not so long ago a short article about the impacts of foreign aid on people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in Haiti, which in fact embodies a piece in the puzzle in the landscape of development cooperation and the forms of economic, social and political sways that come to play with the internal affairs of countries experiencing dire exposures to insecurity. And by looking into these specific issues it frames a debate worth discussing re new thinking in security, and how processes in aid mechanisms evolve with pressing precedence to address human development.
In the case of Haiti these matters are of growing importance as development policy and the effectiveness of program implementation bring about a praxis that has to deal with increasing gaps fomented through patterns of international exclusion, extending poverty/inequalities and social conflicts. These elements decode the core of a global approach which tends to favor the construction of a peace-building agenda that clearly positions the concept of nation-building as a tool to guide and promote integration of free-market mechanisms to smoothen the ideas of political and economic stability.

As an interesting point of discussion, the concept of human security can be attracting if we look into the dynamics behind post-conflict situations, and the role of development mechanisms when multi-dimensional variables are essential to be reckoned with.
Moreover, to approach the notion of human security is also a way to examine or weigh policy options in relation to the current changes that have been taking place in development thinking, and the arrangements that come with, or mold the deployment of peace-building frameworks in conflict ridden, or post-conflicts environments.
These are elements that not only draw attention about the impacts of such scenarios on development effectiveness, but also on the inter-connected factors behind hunger, chronic poverty, well being and community empowerment.




Caribbean reps discuss food safety
TANEISHA DAVIDSON, Observer staff reporter
Thursday, August 17, 2006

Representatives from the Caribbean, including Jamaica, met Tuesday to participate in a five-day regional workshop to review draft International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM), aimed at ensuring that consumers were being supplied with food that is safe.

Full Article



Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Foundations will fund Caribbean AIDS Media Campaign


Wednesday, August 16, 2006 

Government to open computer access centres
Wednesday August 16 2006

Hazra C. Medica

In a bid to provide access to information communication technologies (ICTS) at the community level, the government has embarked on a programme which will witness the opening of a number of Community Computer Access Centres on the island.

In speaking at the launch of the ICTFEST on Monday, Dr. Edmond Mansoor, Minister of State in the Ministry of Information and Telecommunications, said the centres would be deployed initially in a pilot phase programme in the primary schools since these schools do not have access to computerized technology in an orderly or meaningful way.

Full Article



Aug. 15, 2006, 9:03PM

Caribbean Tests Mobile Worker Plan

By ADAM RANEY Associated Press Writer
© 2006 The Associated Press

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad — With construction stagnant in her native Jamaica, architect Mandilee Newton left one island for another _ taking a design job in oil- and gas-rich Trinidad.

By finding a position across the Caribbean, the bespectacled Newton, 27, said she managed to boost her career without migrating to Europe or North America like so many skilled workers from the region.

Full Article



Et Voila…..

How to sustain growth and channel re-distributive policies? The recent rounds of discussions between the president of the IDB, and Leonel Fernandez, president of the D.R. have clearly depicted the directions of future policy options for the country. And adding an interesting flavor to those discussions have been the linkages between macro-economic stabilization procedures and growth-mediated processes.

“IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno also stated that in order to ensure inclusive growth, it is necessary to deepen the macro-economic measures already taken by the dominican government, and to adopt other measures that are pending. Among these pending measures, the most important are consolidating the tax reforms of the last two years, improving the targeting of the poor in the government’s social expenditures, strengthening the Central Bank’s capacity to control inflation, and taking measures to increase the economy’s international competitiveness.”

For planners and policy-makers, these scenarios will be testing grounds to harness the deployment and utilization of the improved economic landscape toward the expansion of social services, and budgeting operations to cover social expenditures. Thus, come to the front-burners the questions liaised with the effective increase of real-income per capita, and improvements in human development indicators, inter alia, to strengthen the process of development along with enhancements in the quality of life.



About me

  • I'm Em Asomba
  • From United States
My profile
Skype Me™!

Poverty & Social Development: A Caribbean Perspective is powered by Blogspot and Gecko & Fly.
No part of the content or the blog may be reproduced without prior written permission.
Join the Google Adsense program and learn how to make money online.