Technical committees appointed for the National Social Mitigation Plan

On Monday June 3, 2019, the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services hosted a brief distribution ceremony for appointees to the newly commissioned Inter-Sectoral Advisory and Policy and Programmatic Oversight Committees. The event was held at the Ministry’s Head office in Port-of-Spain.

Cabinet has approved for implementation, a National Social Mitigation Plan (NSMP) for Trinidad and Tobago. The theme chosen for the National Social Mitigation Plan (NSMP) is “Building Resilience to Secure Our Nation”.  Among other things, the Plan is intended to equip vulnerable populations with resources and tools to cope with the short-term consequences of poverty related challenges and overcome these in the medium to long term. However, even as families and individuals are supported by the state to fulfil their basic needs in the short term, the thrust of the NSMP is on human capital development and resilience building; and is guided by the principles of sustainability, empowerment and continuous improvement.

Both Committees are charged with the responsibility of implementing various aspects of the NSMP which will be phased on a short, medium and long term basis. During her welcome remarks, the Honourable Cherrie-Ann Crichlow-Cockburn, Minister of Social Development and Family Services, gave an overview of the NSMP, as well as some of the specific responsibilities of both committees; in the context of improving the national social safety net of at-risk citizens and vulnerable citizens. Minister Crichlow-Cockburn explained that a major aspect of the Plan is the establishment of a Social Support and Empowerment (SSE) Unit at the Ministry, to coordinate the delivery of Government services to citizens in need. The Minister extended gratitude to the committee members for their willingness to serve over the next 3 years.

The Committees comprise technocrats from various Government Ministries, academia and civil society organizations. Specifically, the mandate of the Policy and Programmatic Oversight Committee will include the monitoring and evaluation of complaints and appeals from members of the public. Consequently, its work will focus on the identification of structural and other organisational factors, which can either enhance or impede the execution of the NSMP’s deliverables. The work of the Inter-Sectoral Advisory Committee will be complementary to the afore-mentioned, including the development of preventative, restorative and resilience-building interventions and strategies in the overarching interest of sustainable development.

Before receiving their instruments of appointment, appointees were also reminded about the serious nature of their responsibilities, and encouraged to remain responsible, honest and diligent in the fulfilment of their duties. The lists of appointees are as follows:

 Policy & Programme and Oversight Committee

  • Mr. Vijay Gangapersad (Chairperson), Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Social Development and Family Services
  • Ms. Melissa Williams – Policy Development Specialist, Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts
  • Mrs Shanmatee Singh Ng Sang – Director Research and Planning, Ministry of Labour and Small Enterprise Development
  • Mrs. Lisa Henry-David – Director, Educational Planning, Ministry of Education
  • Mr Beesham Seetaram – Programme Administrator, Ministry of Health
  • Mrs. Mauricia Pegus – Manager Customer Service, Ministry of Public Utilities
  • Ms. Jemmimah Wilson – Senior Policy Specialist, Child and Gender Affairs (OPM)
  • Ms. Lueandra Neptune – Assistant Director (Ag.), Policy, Research and Planning Ministry of Agriculture, Land and Fisheries
  • Ms Beverly Haywood - Planning Officer II, Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government
  • Ms. Maxine Hypolite-Bones, Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (Financial Literacy Programme)
  • Ms. Arlene Grant – Project Analyst Ag., National Insurance Board of Trinidad and Tobago
  • Ms. Nina Antoine – Senior Economist, Ministry of Housing and Urban Development  

 Inter-Sectoral Advisory Committee

  • Mrs. Jacinta Bailey-Sobers, Permanent Secretary Ministry of Social Development and Family Services-  (Chairperson)
  • Ms. Angelique Taylor, Director (Ag.), Social Planning and Research, Permanent Secretary Ministry of Social Development and Family Services - (Secretary/Member
  • Ms. Meera Ramesar – Director, Socio-Economic Policy Planning Division, Ministry of Planning and Development
  • Mrs. Kimberly Roberts – Senior Economist, Ministry of Finance
  • Ms. Daaliya Headlie – Economist I, Ministry of Rural Development and Local Government
  • Dr Emmanuel Janagan Johnson, Lecturer (Department of Behavioural Sciences and Co-ordinator Social Work Unit), University of the West Indies
  • Ms. Angela Lum-Joseph – Ag. Director, Public Management, Ministry of Public Administration
  • Ms. Pauline Hamilton – General Security and Risk Consultant, Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce
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