Pro-Rights Approach & Solutions for Hope
Sons and Daughters of Liberty, the Democratic Republican Party (DRP) of St. Vincent and the Grenadines brings you greetings of grace and peace from our loving, heavenly father as we commemorate 35 years of Independence in SVG. Reflecting on this year’s independence, let us consider its meaning, what we ought to celebrate and our goals for the near future in this unprecedented period of earth’s history.
We know that Independence marks the end of British colonial rule. Yet Independence ought to mean more than this. Our constitution dated the same year as independence – 1979 –outlines guarantees for fundamental rights and freedoms which have been endowed to us by our Creator God. Our people need to be better educated about these rights that they may know them, value them, enjoy their exercise of them, respect them and defend them. Greater focus must be given to such education at home, in communities, schools and at work establishments. This independence we ought to celebrate our possession of inalienable rights and freedoms.
In the global situation, anti-rights and freedoms legislation and behaviours seem to be the order of the day. Look at the assault on the right to freedom of conscience and right to life of Christian Iraquis, Syrians and other ethnic and religious minorities, at the barbaric hands of ISIS and other terrorist groups. Hear their calls for Jihadists globally to rise up and murder the “disbelievers” and recognize that men, women and children like us are crucified, beheaded, raped and murdered just for their freedom of belief and conscience. Sympathize with them and celebrate your right to freedom of conscience. Cherish it and do not let any government or other authority force you to yield it.
The DRP is cognizant of the challenges we continue to face this independence and we are poised with a PRO-RIGHTS PHILOSOPHY OF GOVERNANCE – REPUBLICANISM — to provide meaningful change for good to our situation. Republicanism emphasizes protection of human rights and freedoms as sacred and divinely endowed. We truly believe in equality for all under law and the right to self-determination of each individual. That the rights of humanity do not come from the legislative pen, a majority or even an elite minority, that they cannot be given by man or nature, but that they only proceed from the great legislator of the universe, is our foundation understanding. With the watchwords LIBERTY, EQUALITY and DEVELOPMENT we will, as a priority, focus on practical solutions to improve the human and social welfare situation of our people, especially the most vulnerable among us. We will ensure an adequately funded Human and Social welfare department on the premise “To each according to his need”, from which aid will be distributed without partiality and partisan political interference, so help us God. Some of our plans for the DISABLED COMMUNITY include:
- Provide state assistance for those who cannot work (such as Housing and medical care)
- Provide monetary assistance in training in a profession of their choice.
- Provide jobs for those who are qualified
A DRP government will also make SIGN LANGUAGE LEARNING MANDATORY within key professions among Police, Doctors and Nurses, in order to better serve our constituency of differently abled persons. We will strengthen SUPPORT FOR SCHOOLS FOR CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL NEEDS through the provision of adequate educational tools such as sign language books, cards and ensuring adequate transportation assistance to school, for ALL disabled children, wherever they may reside. The DRP gives meaning to independence with these measures, in keeping with the self-determination and freedom of these individuals, despite their limitations.
The DRP continues to study the ROOT CAUSES OF CRIME AND VIOLENCE in our land with a view to addressing it as adequately as possible. One of the growing causes is Juvenile Delinquency (JD). Our JD PLAN will tackle this through 3 angles: Employment, Skills Training and Boot Camp Discipline. In brief, through public-private partnership and legislative measures, we will empower law enforcement officers to round up juveniles who would then be put to work for pay, in various areas of benefit to society. More problematic youth will be identified for boot camp discipline training.
Our FAMILY COUNSEL PLAN will focus on restoring broken homes. There will be weekly educational sessions in all schools- educating children against sexual immoralities and how to watch out for pedophilia and incest, how to protect themselves against teenage pregnancy, AIDS and other STDs. These sessions will also include ethics training, teaching them how to speak respectful words, lessons in helping each other and such like. As DRP leader and Prime Minister I will make time to personally go to schools and participate in facilitation of these training sessions as motivation for our children.
Many are the problems which plague us locally, regionally and internationally. A DRP government will institute an INNOVATION ASSEMBLY. Sitting often enough, it will be composed of ministers of government, retired public servants-experts in various fields (police, immigration, economics, health, agriculture etc.) and other experts to:
- Brainstorm on new ideas to address various problems affecting the Country
- Discuss and Debate issues to arrive at workable solutions for problems.
- Draft papers to present to Cabinet for the implementation of policies
This way, there will be no lack of great and workable ideas from our people to help our Country and this is in keeping with the DRP’s watch phrase “PEOPLE’s PARTICIATORY POWER”. All these ideas and much more the DRP brings to serve our independent nation with a pro-rights approach and solutions for governance and development in the 21st century. The DRP is the alternative of hope for SVG if the people lend us the opportunity to govern. A happy independence to all!
Anesia O. Baptiste
Democratic Republican Party (DRP)