The Saint Lucia National Reparations Committee (NRC) is planning an effective public education programme to encourage, galvanize and attract nation-wide popular participation in its work to promote the ideas and actions relating to CARICOM’s common and coordinated approach to the pursuit of reparations for slavery and native genocide.
The NRC, established in November 2013 following appointment by the prime minister and the cabinet of ministers, held two meetings in December, at which a Plan of Action for 2014 was discussed. Among the plans for the new year are its official launching in February, as part of the 35th Independence anniversary celebrations.
The work of the NRC will be directed by the nine-member committee and four sub-committees, which have been established to drive the NRC’s initial national programme. These include a Launching Committee, a Public Awareness and Promotion Committee, a Research Committee and a Finance Committee.
The NRC also plans to embark on an active Public Awareness and Promotion campaign to take its activities to communities and entities around the island. It will engage and work with national and community groups to arrange discussions and promote the supporting rationale for the reparations idea in communities, schools and other venues throughout the country.
The committee intends to establish direct cooperative relations with resource persons and entities nationally, regionally and internationally (historians, teachers, researchers, academics, educational institutions, archivists, etc) to assist in the promotion and engagement of public education activities around the country.
While the NRC is a cabinet-appointed committee, it intends to invite individuals and entities to establish joint cooperative and collaborative relationships to promote and pursue the reparations agenda and actions in Saint Lucia, throughout 2014 and beyond.
As part of its regional and international outreach, the NRC plans to establish early networking relationships and exchanges with fraternal fellow NRCs in other CARICOM member-states and to work with the Regional Reparations Commission to effectively implement the objectives outlined in the Terms of Reference and the guiding principles agreed by CARICOM governments in 2013 in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago, respectively. The committee will also engage the African Union in fulfilling its mandate.
Members of the Saint Lucia NRC are – Earl Bousquet (Chairman); Dr June Soomer, Ambassador to OECS and CARICOM; Dr Anderson Reynolds, JAKO Productions Director; Priest Kailash Kay Leonce; Bongo Wisely Tafari; Nkrumah Lucien; Leslie Charles; Eric Branford; Thea Alexander; Delia John; Lydia Charlemagne and a representative of the National Youth Council (NYC).