The Family and Society

Focusing on Uplifting Children, Women, Parents, Males-at-Risk

The Unity Labour Party Manifesto 2015
Table of Contents

The family is the single most important institution in the society.  A central plank of the ULP government has always been to empower the family, to strengthen its bonds of solidarity, and to uplift it. In the family, and society (inclusive of the local community), children, women, teenagers, persons-with-disabilities, the bread-winners, males-at-risk, and parents are our especial focus.  Our government does not pit women against men or vice versa or pull-down young people or encourage “tug-of-war” between various family members.  Despite human challenges, our government encourages and facilitates families to stay together; we accept the precept, too, that “the family that prays together, stays together”.

Since 2001, the ULP government has developed a strong Ministry of National Mobilisation, Social Development, Family, Persons-with-Disabilities, Youth, and Gender Affairs. In 2015, it was accorded a recurrent budged of $26.6 million, more than twice, in real terms, the sum allocated for the recurrent operation of similar portfolios in 2001. In this Ministry there are ten active programmes, namely: Cooperative Division, Family Affairs Division (recurrent budget $18.8 million); Community Development Division; Gender Affairs; Liberty Lodge Boys Training Centre; Home-Help-for-the-Elderly; Youth Affairs; Crisis Centre for Women and Girls; Youth Empowerment Services (YES); and Children Against Poverty.  Some programmes such as those for the elderly, the YES, Gender Affairs (formerly Women Affairs alone), and the Crisis Centre are initiatives of the ULP government.

Over the next five years, the ULP administration will:

✔ Enact and implement fully the array of “family” legislation including those regarding children (adoption and care), and Domestic Violence; several of these legislative reforms have already been passed in Parliament;

✔ Broaden and deepen further the Community Poverty Alleviation Programme;

✔ Expand further the Children Against Poverty Programme;

✔ Enhance the operation of the Crisis Centre for Women and Children;

✔ Strengthen the implementation of the comprehensive policy in respect of gender affairs, including teen mothers, young boys and girls at risk, “street children”, foster children, women (especially vulnerable ones), and young men;

✔ Work jointly with the Ministries of Housing and Health on the full implementation of “the Lives to Live” Programme;

✔ Rebuild the Liberty Lodge Boys’ Training Centre;

✔ Implement all dimensions of the Juveniles Justice Project in conjunction with the Ministry of Legal Affairs and the Police;

✔ Work closely with the Ministry of Education on the educational development of students, especially those with family and personal social challenges;

✔ Strengthen further the Home-Help-for-the-Elderly Programme;

✔ Adopt and implement all relevant international conventions regarding Women, Children, the Protection of the Elderly, and Persons with Disabilities;

✔ Ensure that all persons who are disabled be guaranteed the full enjoyment of the rights vouchsafed for all other persons, without discrimination or diminution on the grounds of their disablement; this guarantee includes access on an equal basis to all amenities and facilities that are made available to the rest of the general population;

✔ Work ever more closely with all civil society organisations with which the Ministry interfaces on subjects within its remit;

✔ Strengthen further the safety net arrangements including the delivery of the programmes for Public Assistance and other targeted welfare/social development programmes, inclusive of coordination with the NIS;

✔ Enhance further the delivery of community development services.

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