Chairman of the Barbados Private Sector Association Edward Clarke (FILE)
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The Barbados Private Sector Association issued a statement today in relation to key issues which have generated increased debate in recent weeks.
The statement said there is a need to “reconstruct and rebuild” nationally, a process which must “include discussion on racial division and economic enfranchisement”.
Please see the full statement below.
"The members of the Barbados Private Sector Association (BPSA) continue to be engaged together with other Social Partners in the process of rebuilding our economy and society following the Covid-19 pandemic’s significant impact. At the same time, the BPSA too is cognizant of the present global, social and economic realities which could impact our small developing nation’s ability to achieve “the future we want”, for all citizens and residents and the generations to come.
"Given the need and opportunity for us to 'reconstruct and rebuild' nationally, occurring at this time of global conversation on racial tensions and inequities, attention must also include a focus on imbalances that currently exist in our country. It is therefore timely, and necessary, to honestly look at the society we live in with a view to progressing Barbados to become a model of inclusiveness, diversity and equality of access for all. Undoubtedly, this process must necessarily include discussion on racial division and economic enfranchisement in Barbados.
"BPSA recognises the benefit of consultation and dialogue and regards these as being critical if any meaningful positive national change is to be achieved. More importantly, such consultation and dialogue must be of a calibre to develop an implementable plan to address, with success, the issues including any inequalities and inequities. It is anticipated that such a plan would be underpinned with a commitment from all stakeholders to be part of the change process.
"We also signal BPSA’s support for the removal to a more suitable environment the statue of Lord Nelson which was erected on March 22, 1813 to commemorate the anniversary of the British Royal Navy’s victory in the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. Indeed, the renaming of Trafalgar Square to Heroes Square renders the current positioning of Lord Nelson, overlooking the seat of our National Heroes, incongruous.
"BPSA stands ready not only to be engaged in the dialogue but also for each of us to introspect and to answer all well formulated, collective calls to action drafted with the input of every voice of our nation.
"We therefore call for discussion and engagement on these matters of national concern with a view to agreeing specific and tangible actions, as collectively, we journey to achieve 'One Barbados'." (PR)