Social policy coming
Barbados is in the process of constructing a detailed Social Policy Framework based on the findings of the Country
Assessment of Living Conditions (CALC) Study.
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart disclosed that the framework would be supplemented by the appropriate poverty
eradication programmes and promised that Barbados’ progress on these matters would be shared during the next
Community of Latin American and Caribbean States in Cuba (CELAC) Summit.
Stuart made the disclosure during an address at the Second Summit of Heads of Government of CELAC.
The two-day meeting, which ended yesterday, had as its theme Struggle Against Hunger, Poverty And
Inequalities In Latin America And The Caribbean.
The Prime Minister shared the results of the CALC Study with the other heads, as part of his argument that there
should be a special consideration of the needs of middle income countries classified as countries with very high human
development because they still had serious pockets of poverty which needed attention.
“This information on the CALC Study supports, Mr President, our argument that middle income countries are severely
constrained by the lack of access to grants and concessional financing and critical technical assistance. For while their general
standard of living may be high by comparison with other countries, they often have serious pockets of deprivation that are
entrenched and reflect a high degree of intergenerational poverty, which requires the exertion of serious efforts if it is to be
eradicated,” he charged.
Stuart stressed that Barbados, other countries in CARICOM, and states like Cuba, have additional structural and
environmental vulnerabilities as small island developing states (SIDS). “And thus, the special declaration on SIDS is
recognition that the unique characteristics of SIDS require special attention from the CELAC. In this regard, I am also
heartened by the inclusion of the special declaration on Climate Change and Integrated Disaster Risk Management,” he told
The Prime Minister reminded the heads that it was the struggle against hunger, poverty and inequalities in Latin America
and the Caribbean which inspired them to form CELAC and said he was pleased that there would be a second meeting on
Social Development and Eradication of Hunger and Poverty in the course of this year.
“We attended the first meeting, held in Venezuela last year, which started the process of our joint work on this matter.
For if our people are unable to benefit from basic necessities such as food and nutritional security, they will not be able to
realise the areas for action that we have detailed in our ambitious Plan of Action. The history of this region dictates that we
continue to give priority to the development of enlightened social policy,” Stuart stated.
Presidents and prime ministers from 33 Latin American and Caribbean countries participated in the Second Summit
Of Heads Of Government of the CELAC, from January 27 to 29. A Declaration of Havana and a Plan of Action for
2014, covering several important economic and social areas, were adopted. (BGIS)