Archbishop: Unemployment rate alarming

Archbishop Robert Rivas has asserted that unemployment in Saint Lucia should be a cause for alarm.

He  noted that even in developed countries there is a percentage of persons who are unemployed.

However Rivas said that when unemployment reaches some 25 percent with over 42 percent of the youth without jobs, it should ring alarm bells in this country.

The Archbishop stated that any leadership of a nation should be concerned.

He explained that those who are employed should not take it for granted, sit in a comfort zone and not care about the jobless.

“We have to have a national conscience when it comes to unemployment,” the head of the local Catholic Church declared.

The Archbishop disclosed that he was very glad to see the new government make getting people employed one of its immediate concerns.

He observed that with employment, people can build up their lives, care for their homes and families and become productive.

Archbishop Rivas spoke of the need for a philosophy where early in life, young people are taught to save.

“You might say if you don’t have, how can you save, but there is always that little bit,” he asserted.

Rivas said he was aware that some little forms of credit unions or cooperatives exist, where children are taught to put something aside.

“It may not be much, but the principle is an important one and I would like to see more of that spreading throughout our education and social system, where we help teach families to save, even when there is very little,” he explained.

The Archbishop noted that at some time in the future, he and other clergymen would like to sit with new Prime Minister, Allen Chastanet, and some members of his cabinet.

He revealed that the purpose of the meeting would be to discuss how the clergy view the nation and the new administration.

Rivas said the meeting would also discuss how the clergy can be partners in developing the country.

 

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