BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, APRIL 25th, 2018 (PRESS SEC) – Following up on a successful public forum that Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris and his Team Unity administration held with close to 500 members of the Hispanic community one month ago at the Newtown Community Centre – in order to better understand their views and circumstances – the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis is set to establish a committee focused on promoting multiculturalism and diversity.
Prime Minister Harris said today, Wednesday, April 25th, 2018, at his press conference that he had proposed to Cabinet yesterday that a committee be formed under the aegis of the Office of the Prime Minister. The Honourable Prime Minister said this committee would “devise policies to improve their [the Hispanic community’s] status and encourage multiculturalism in our Federation.”
The Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis added that, “The committee membership will be drawn from the Hispanic Community, the Department of Immigration, National Security, the Office of the Prime Minister, Education and Culture, Foreign Affairs, Legal Affairs, Social and Community Development, because of course there are multiple issues in terms of their integration.”
The Prime Minister, who is also the Minister of National Security, noted, “…this committee is drawn broad and wide, to capture as many of the issues that have come out of that engagement [held at the Newtown Community Centre on Thursday, March 22nd], including always the issue of regularization.”
Prime Minister Harris said the committee would foster engagement and social inclusion by addressing barriers to full participation in the society.
The committee would consider, for instance, how to effectively teach and integrate foreign-speaking students into our education system, where classes are conducted in an English setting. The committee members would therefore discuss matters such as “what resources will be required to make that learning exercise easier for them,” the Honourable Prime Minister said.
Prime Minister Harris also said the committee would consider how to improve the Hispanic community’s access to social services.
The Honourable Prime Minister said, “As we examine what is happening and what has happened to our own emigrants elsewhere [for example, those who left for the United Kingdom as part of the Windrush generation], we want to develop a policy that is more wholesome and reflects current-day expectations.”