All truck operators at the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) and workers involved in the beautification program will be receiving their first weekly wage since the Cabinet increased payment to the organization.
Chairman of the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) James ‘Tanny’ Rose was on record explaining that the amounts paid over to the workers each week, including a sum paid weekly from the CIP, were simply insufficient to meet expenses.
Following the examination of the accounts, the Cabinet decided to increase the payment from the CIP to US$120,000 weekly.Speaking to ZDK news on Friday Rose said the expectation is that all the workers will be receiving their weekly wage as of today.
Prior to this, it had been over three weeks since workers at solid waste received monies owed to them. The increase in funds provided by Cabinet is to assist in reducing the backlog in payments owed to the workers.
Antigua and Barbuda among three other Caribbean islands have officially been validated by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and World Health Organization (WHO) as countries to have completely eliminated the transmission of HIV and Syphilis from Mother to Child.
The landmark announcement was officially disclosed at the 31st Policy Board of the OCES/PPS and the 4th Council of Ministers meeting in Martinique, being held from November 9th to 10th.
The official validation certification ceremony will take place in St Kitts on the 1st of December 2017. The twin island state will be represented at the event by Minister of Health and the Environment-Molwyn Joseph and Director of Pharmaceutical-Mr. Alfred Athill.
In June 2015, Cuba became the first county in the world to eliminate Mother-To-Child Transmission of HIV and Syphilis
According to Minister Joseph, this sterling achievement is a clear reflection of the development, investments and maturity of the country’s health system, and the commitment of healthcare professionals in Antigua and Barbuda.
The general public is being urged to take action to combat climate change as the Department of the Environment launches a series of activities so celebrate Arbour Month.
Arbour Month is an annual event celebrated in Antigua and Barbuda during the month of November and it is the time of year where individuals and groups are encouraged to plant more trees.
Under the theme “Ride the Climate Wave”, the DOE held a brief ceremony signalling the activities for Arbour month on Monday and began the annual tree planting exercise in which over ten palm trees were planted within the Botanical Gardens.
During his brief presentation, Minister of Health and the Environment, Hon Molwyn Joseph stressed the importance and reason for the celebration of Arbour Month, describing it as one of the most important days relevant to all living things in the world.
AIDS Program Manager Delcora Williams has reported only 1 case of mother to child HIV transmission over the past five years
With the required rate of 2 percent for HIV infections within OECS countries Williams said that Antigua and Barbuda is well within the range with only one case of mother to child transmission since 2012.
The program manager while speaking during an interview said that with the support received by the government, the main aim of the secretariat is to ensure the elimination of HIV transmission especially mother to child.
She continued giving details on how the secretariat plans to ensure elimination and offer more testing for individuals.
With the recent launch of the Government’s Online Citizen’s Portal and the ongoing digitization of key government service, The Minister of Broadcasting, Telecommunications and Information Technology Melford Nicholas has disclosed that much more is on the way.
The Minister stated that with the budget allocation afforded to his Ministry from the 2016 budget, new changes will be made to bring Antigua and Barbuda into the modern age.
He noted that this would be done in a cost effective way in order to lessen the burden on the public purse while still bringing in good returns.
The Minister added that a part of plans to bring Antigua into the modern age is to improve the broadcasting industry in the country, which he said is lagging behind.
He stated that the budget allocation has given his ministry the capability to set out to purchase a new transmitter to be placed at the Boggy Peak site.
The Ministry of Broadcasting,Telecommunications and Information Technology was allocated $14.5 million in the 2016 Budget.
Antigua and Barbuda became the latest country to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
In a statement, Ambassador Dr. Walton Aubrey Webson, the Permanent Representative to the United Nations said that “Antigua and Barbuda considers this ratification an important step by a small island state by agreeing to support and address the issues of persons with disabilities who are disproportionately represented among the world’s poorest, and lack equal access to basic resources such as education, employment, healthcare and legal support systems”.
Figures from the recent “world report on Disability” said that about 15 per cent of the world’s population lives with some form of disability,” and those persons face physical, social, economic and attitudinal barriers that prevent them from effectively participating in society.
The Convention was adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2006 in an effort to ensure that persons with disabilities enjoy the same human rights as everyone else.
The treaty sets out the obligations of States Parties to promote, protect and ensure the rights of all people with disabilities and promotes equal rights in all areas of life.
Following the incident on New Year’s Day which left 15 year old Shaveesa Gasper nursing 2nd and 3rd Degree Burns, Health Professionals discussed a growing concern about mental health in Antigua and Barbuda.
Neighbors of the family have been saying that the mother had shown signs of being mentally unstable after reports indicated that the mother of the teen set her alight after having doused her with Gasoline.
Weighing in on the matter, Psychiatrist Dr. Griffin Benjamin indicated that he would not be surprised if Gasper’s mother was suffering from an undiagnosed mental health issue.
He stated that even when these conditions are diagnosed; there is no proper access to care and treatment for these individuals in Antigua which needs to be improved upon.
Also assessing the issue, PAHO Representative for the Eastern Caribbean and Barbados Godfrey Xuereb stated that in many situations of this nature, it is always unfortunate when poor mental health is an issue.
The PAHO Representative indicated that the organization has been working along with health professionals throughout the region to ensure that they can identify mental disorders in patients.
Xuereb stated that structures need to be put in place to ensure that mental health is dealt with properly, not only in Antigua and Barbuda, but among the wider Caribbean.
Last week, Shaveesa Gasper was airlifted from the Mount St. John’s Medical Centre to Martinique to undergo treatment at the burn centre there. Officials disclosed that her injuries were too severe, so the teen was then moved to Paris France where she will undergo reconstructive plastic surgery.