Hundreds show up for job registration drive

POSTED: 09/10/15 1:44 PM


job hunt 2This 20-year-old job hunter is eagerly awaiting the processing of names and applications. Photo Today / Milton Pieters

St. Maarten – The Department of Labor Affairs and Social Services hosted a registration drive yesterday at the Clem Labega Square in the parking lot in front of the Government Administration Building. The Start Here Campaign: Your Path to Employment and Career Development“, with the theme “Your Path Starts Here” attracted 317 job seekers. Their information will be processed; others can still register today at the labor office on the Pondfill.

The campaign is geared towards boosting economic viability of a large segment of the population while also changing the perception and attitudes regarding the meditative role of the department, in the world of employment. This program is the brainchild of Member of Parliament Cornelius de Weever who initiated the proposal while in office as Minister of Labor and now sees the fruits of his labor. “I am proud to see this program materialize, the large scale registration drive like this needs to happen. We need to get people jobs. This is why I wanted to do something like this, today you see younger and older folks coming to register and getting information for companies first hand,” the MP said.

Live music, snacks and drinks were given out to participants. The drive started at 9 a.m. and by 11.30 a.m., 140 people had signed up. The primary objective is to match job seekers with suitable vacancies, provided by the business community. This task becomes difficult with a small or insufficient database. The “Start Here” campaign aims therefore to expand and update the current database with suitable and competent jobseekers. The Campaign consists of four initiatives: the first initiative significantly relaxes the requirements to register as a jobseeker, (this initiative goes into effect today). Persons who register on or after this date will only need to submit the completed registration form, a copy of a valid identification card, an updated resume and a copy of relevant diplomas and or certificates.

The department is currently developing a platform in which job seekers and the business community can interact freely about employment opportunities. The platform will consist of vacancies separately sourced by the department during an upcoming registration drive and various profiles of job seekers and career development opportunities.

The “Start Here Activity” aims to guide people along their path to employment and career development opportunities. Attendees will follow a path steered by important questions concerning educational background and work experience, until they arrive at their desired destination and ending with the registration process. Attendees will also be provided with information on vacancies and job training opportunities currently available at the department.

Labor affairs have been working tirelessly to acquire new partnerships with businesses for employment and training opportunities. The opportunities will vary in terms of industries, requirements for educational background and experience. The department has made good strides in the area of partnerships with some of the leading companies on the island, however more is needed and will be expected from the business community.

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