Guyana was one of 13 Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries that participated in the ILO's Tripartite Caribbean Employment Forum (TCEF), held in Barbados in October 2006. At that Forum, the tripartite constituents adopted a Declaration and Plan of Action in which they resolved “… to formulate Decent Work Country Programmes to advance decent work priorities in national development agendas”. They also recognized the TCEF as “… a major first step towards developing DWCPs to make the Decade of Promoting Decent Work in the Americas a reality in the English- and Dutch-speaking Caribbean”.
The commitments made at the TCEF continue to be honoured over the years and they provide the basis for the design of DWCPs. The process for developing a DWCP is led by Government and the social partners. The priorities of this results based Programme are informed by national development plans and strategies, and the DWCP opens the way for constituents to seek the support of regional and international development partners for “advancing the Decent Work Agenda and reducing poverty”.
The DWCP for Guyana was drawn up at a national tripartite workshop convened by the Labour Ministry and the social partners, in collaboration with the ILO, on 25 and 26 March 2010. The event was given high-level political support, with the Prime Minister of Guyana delivering the feature address at the Opening. The Honourable Minister of Labour participated in the Opening and in the entire programming Workshop.
The programming exercise was preceded by internal preparatory consultations in the Labour Ministry, within the employers’ and workers’ organizations, and in the National Tripartite Committee (NTC). There was broad-based participation in the Workshop at which the priorities and activities for programme implementation were discussed and agreed by consensus. In addition to members of the NTC, there were senior officials and experts from various government institutions and United Nations entities which could contribute to and support the Programme (see Annex 2 for the list of participants).
The participants agreed on four priority areas for the DWCP:
- The creation of green jobs and decent work;
- the enhancement of technical and vocational education and training;
- the promotion of entrepreneurship education and training and the development of cooperatives;
- (a) the strengthening of the capacity of the labour administration system; and
(b) the strengthening of the capacities of employers’ and workers’ organizations