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The creation of a clear strategy to facilitate deeper engagement of the Jamaican-Canadian Diaspora for national development, will be of great focus as the third staging of the biennial Jamaica Diaspora Canada National Conference gets underway on Saturday, July 21 in Toronto, Canada.

Senator the Honourable Pearnel Charles Jr., Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, says in order for meaningful engagement to exist, we need to strengthen the communication channels between Jamaica and the Diaspora and have greater collaboration with Diaspora taskforces and critical stakeholders.

Minister Charles Jr. who will be the Keynote Speaker at the event said, “the concerns of the Jamaicans in the Diaspora, those returning and our youths, are important to me. I look forward, therefore, to meeting with our Jamaicans in Canada for the second time, as we exchange development ideas and solutions geared toward both assisting Jamaicans in the Diaspora and at home.”

Organized around concurrent workshops and plenary sessions, the main topics to be discussed during the Conference, will include: investment in Jamaica; crime, policing and the justice system; health care; youth empowerment; immigration and customs and education. Conference convener and a member of the Diaspora Advisory Board, Dr. Sylvanus Thompson said, “the Conference will focus on generating feedback and garnering insight on an array of issues relevant to Jamaicans within the Diaspora and key issues of importance to Jamaica’s development.“

Ms. Yvette Blackburn, DAB Member and joint convener expressed pleasure at the level of interest and is confident of the positive outcomes to be achieved. The conference is being executed by the two Jamaica Diaspora Advisory Board Members for Canada under the theme: “Out of Many, One People: A Spotlight on the Issues.