Caribbean Cement Company Limited is being commended by the Jamaica Council of Persons with Disabilities (JCPD) for its role in the development of skills for persons with disabilities.
Executive Director of the State-run entity with responsibility for the implementation of policies and programmes for persons with disabilities, Dr. Christine Hendricks, also hailed the cement company for empowering the lives of these people in an effort to build a more inclusive Jamaican society.
“I applaud Carib Cement for joining other companies in Jamaica in empowering persons with disabilities. I look forward to greater employment opportunities being made available,” she said.
Her remarks follow a recently held closing ceremony for participants in Carib Cement’s employment training programme for persons with disabilities, which is part of the company’s push towards building diversity and inclusion.
The JCPD head also wants to see other companies creating similar opportunities to make Jamaica a better place for all to live, work, raise families and do business.
Managing Director of Caribbean Cement Company Limited, Yago Castro, for his part, noted, that the rationale for the programme was to give more persons from the disabled community a chance to participate in their own social and economic life.
“We recognize that persons living with disabilities are disadvantaged in Jamaica, as in some cases there are limited access to employment opportunities as well as infrastructure to assist them in getting around. We also wanted to extend this practice of diversity and inclusion to those we serve in society. This will allow for greater economic and social growth,” he said.
Participants Amerilis Cain, Sandrean Bailey and Abigail Grant have expressed gratitude to the company for the skills learned during the four-week programme, which included understanding the employment application process, the job interview process and how to manage time. They were also certified in Microsoft Office tools Excel and PowerPoint.
Organised in collaboration with former Colombian ambassador to Jamaica, His Excellency, Jairo Clopatofsky, the employment training programme is the first of its kind by the company.
One individual from the programme will be retained by the company in short order. The skills development programme forms part of a raft of measures instituted by the company to build diversity and inclusion and includes the introduction of a lactation room for breast feeding mothers returning to work, the introduction of paternity leave, changes to recruitment to ensure an unbiased process and facilitating openness to differences.
The training also coincided with a recent diversity and inclusion panel discussion held with CEMEX Regional President, Jesus Gonzalez, and members of the local leadership on facilitating a pathway for more women to enter the cement industry.