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Jun 22, 2022

Improving Services at Vital Stats, Lands Department and Immigration

As the work of the public service sector is being celebrated this week, it is also being used to bring into sharp focus the unchecked issues residents have been facing at some government departments. We’re talking specifically about the long queues outside of the Vital Statistics Office on Queen Street, the tedious and often frustrating processes at the Lands Department and the Immigration Office. A survey on customer service is soon complete and Minister of Public Service Henry Charles Usher spoke about it.


Henry Charles Usher

Henry Charles Usher, Minister of Public Service

“What they found is that there are certain hot-button departments that we really have to address – Vital Statistics being one of them; Passport/Immigration being another one and the Lands Department being the third real hot-button department. So we need to work with the C.E.O.s in those particular ministries and with the customer relation officers in those ministries to make sure we address the overall experience of Belizeans going in to get that service. It takes embracing certain changes. We’ve seen especially with those picking of numbers, we know that there’s a lot of mischief there with the picking of the numbers. But what we need to address and it takes a lot of resources, believe me, we are looking at digitizing the services at Vital Stats, at Passport, at so on, but it is really a matter of finding the resources, finding the money to get those services in place. But I can’t see why we can’t have a system where we set up appointments. Of course, with COVID and the new realities that we face every single day or every single week, we’ve had to change the way we’re doing business. I know there is an appointment system at Social Security, for instance, and people complain about that appointment system. So you want to ensure that you have a service in place that is not only effective, but also for that particular ministry where you are going to have a lot of persons coming in, you can’t have one or two appointments in the morning or one or two appointments in the afternoon – that’s not going to work. You have to make sure that you can see as many people as possible on those particular days.”

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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