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May 21, 2019

Social Protection & Disaster Emergency Services

The Ministry of Human Development Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation is on a mission to establish a comprehensive social protection system in Belize, in an effort to eliminate poverty among the various pockets of vulnerable populations. The third in a series of conferences is taking place at the Biltmore Plaza and is bringing together experts from various sectors, as well as civil society partners to generate commitment on strengthening the policy. Social Planner with the ministry is Mark Antrobus and he shares the steps moving forward.


Mark Antrobus

Mark Antrobus, Social Planner, Ministry of Human Development

“We are learning from experts in the region, internationally and we even have a guest here from BVI, British Virgin Islands, and Dominica as well. And it is really important that we keep this conversation on social protection going. In all of these conferences, it is very clear that if we have a good strong social protection system, it helps in all factors of life—it helps people find productive employments, it helps people recover from emergencies. So building up the system itself and having it respond to all types of situations is really what’s key to this series. It’s a good thing that we partner with different ministries and different agencies. So for instance labour is developing an employment policy which is something that they will do, not us, but obviously we are key partners with them. This will strengthen NEMO and their coordination. We heard yesterday that coordination and working together is key. We had a social protection conference in December so as a ministry we take the lead in terms of social protection and what we call a minimum level of service. We have the next conference in June which will look at multidimensional poverty, which looks at it countrywide—how do we define poverty, how do we measure it. And then maybe later in the year, we have conferences on gender and disability and how they interact with social protection.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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