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JM | Jun 23, 2022

Jamaica to offer domestic worker training at new institute

Juanique Tennant

Juanique Tennant / Our Today

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Jamaica Household Workers’ Union (JHWU) President Shirley Pryce (seated, centre) points out a feature in the JHWU Manual for Household Workers and Employers in Jamaica to Minister of Labour and Social Security Karl Samuda and Project Consultant on the manual and PSA campaign Imani Duncan-Price (seated left) at Thursday’s launch of the manual. Standing behind them are JHWU executive members (from left) Leashia Tyrell-Moore, Elaine Duncan, and Moreen Smith (Photo: Our Today/Cassandra Everett)

Jamaica will in short order become the first country in the world to provide specialised training to household workers with the establishment of a domestic worker training institute.

This is the word from Shirley Pryce, president of the Jamaica Household Worker’s Union (JHWU).

Making her address at the official launch of the household workers and employers in Jamaica manual, put on by the JHWU, last Thursday (June 16), Pryce shared: “Most persons want a trained domestic worker, but where are we going to get them?”

She advised that the training provided by the HEART Academy is more geared to the hotel industry, leaving a deficit for the training of domestic workers.

Recognising this, the JHWU president explained that plans to establish a training institute for domestic workers were now at an advanced stage.

Among the steps that have been taken to facilitate the institute’s fruition are the creation of a business plan, the development of a domestic worker training syllabus and the identification of and application to use the Industrial Disputes Tribunal office as the home of the institution.

“This will be the first school run by domestic workers globally, for domestic workers, so it’s a step in the right direction,” declared a proud Pryce.

She added: “Domestic workers need training. They need to be upscaled and we have to find the space to have them trained. The only way you can get out of poverty is to have an educated population and we will give you that.”

In the meantime, for her part, Imani Duncan-Price, project consultant on the JHWU manual and PSA campaign, shared that as the union awaits the official launch of the institute, the first cohort of trained domestic workers would be graduating on June 16.

The 25 graduates of the institute’s first cohort received training in Computer Literacy.

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