Prime Minister Mia Mottley has led her Government in the signing of the Declaration of Mission Barbados, which she says is designed to bring about operation transformation over the next seven years.
Mottley said that while several transformative processes have already started, there was still a long way to go.
The Declaration of Mission Barbados gives expression to six missions to be achieved by 2030 to transform the society through collaboration. It is intended to engender sustainable development and prosperity for all.
During the Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU) May Day celebrations and Intangible Cultural Heritage showcase by the National Cultural Foundation on Monday, the Social Partnership representatives – Government, labour movement, private sector and civil society – agreed to the six missions.
Outlining those mission objectives, Mottley said the first goal was to make Barbados “a clean and beautiful large ocean state championing sustainable development locally and globally by 2030, with a goal of all domestic activities becoming 100 per cent sustainable by 2035”.
It also speaks to Barbados being transformed into a country of active and involved citizens where all Barbadians will feel empowered and engage in the social, economic and cultural development of the country as confident, creative, compassionate and entrepreneurial citizens by 2030.
The third goal is to ensure that by 2030 all Barbadians have equitable and reliable access to clean water and nutritious food that is affordable. The fourth goal is to create a society that prioritises wellness and happiness by 2030 and that there is improvement of public health and safety, which will result in a 50 per cent reduction in new cases of non-communicable diseases and a 50 per cent reduction in crime.
The fifth mission aims to empower and enfranchise all Barbadian workers and families by creating opportunities for ownership and wealth creation that will lead to a reduction in the rate of poverty by 50 per cent.
The sixth mission is to transform Barbados into a “high functioning resilient society with seamless access to services and meaningful digital inclusion for all Barbadians”.
Mottley told the large gathering that the Social Partnership will spend the next two months identifying the steps to each mission for each of them.
She said a decision on the next seven years to achieve the missions was “because we believe that mission transformation is possible in seven years”.
Mottley said the mission was not about the Social Partnership but it was about all Barbadians who chose to make a difference in Barbados.
“These things are all achievable,” she said, as she called on all citizens to commit to playing their part to ensure the missions were achieved.
Encouraging citizens to show each other respect and care, Mottley also urged Barbadians to unite for the success of mission transformation.
General Secretary of the BWU Toni Moore said she saw Mission Barbados as a solemn agreement for labour, government and the private sector “to share the burden as we navigate through some very uncertain times during the next seven years”.
“This difficult period working with the current government has the potential to produce outstanding gains for workers, but as workers, we must commit to collectively working to achieve them.
“In striving for our goals we must dispel the idea that change can come from government alone without change on our part,” she told the gathering.
Meanwhile, Private Sector representative Trisha Tannis agreed that the mission-oriented approach was dependent on a “highly advanced level of collaboration” between government, private sector, labour and civil society.
“Today, the private sector reiterates its call for a genuine and sincere spirit of collaboration not as word or ceremony only,” said Tannis.
“If we are to achieve the long-term sustainability of this mission-centred approach to nation building, everyone must feel that there is something in it for them, an actualised tangible benefit in one form or the other,” she said.
Tannis said Mission Barbados “cannot work if we do not, from our hearts, respect and embrace our difference of opinions and sincerely seek to reach a place of common understanding”.
The signing of that declaration came as representatives from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) prepared to meet with local officials in Bridgetown this week on the second round of the Barbados Economic Recovery and Transformation (BERT) programme. [email protected]