Minister Cox visits Princes Town Social Welfare Office
November 26, Port of Spain: Staff at the Princes Town District Office of the Ministry of Social Development and Family Services had the opportunity to dialogue with the Minister recently, about strategies, systems and work processes, which could be implemented to help improve customer experience at the Local Boards. Additional training for frontline staff and the expedition in the processing of grants for persons in need, are just two of several measures recommended by Minister.
The Minister was accompanied by Permanent Secretaries Sheila Seecharan and Vijay Gangapersad (Ag.) and other officials from the Ministry’s Head Office. The meeting formed part of the Minister’s on-going outreach sessions to the Ministry’s Social Services’ centres across the country, in her bid to improve service delivery to the vulnerable at all district offices.
Despite the attempts by staff to be present at the offices during COVID 19, several challenges were highlighted with respect to operational systems and procedures. In response, to this the Minister suggested the need for greater communication and synergies across the local boards, as well as greater information sharing so that solutions that work in one board may be adopted by another. The Minister also indicated that need for checklists to be used at all district offices so that clients and members of the public will lessen their visits to the offices during this time.
Minister Cox, who empathised with the staff, thanked them for their continued yeoman service despite the challenges, and committed to looking into their concerns. She also suggested that a first responder system be implemented, where the Ministry can be assisted by the respective communities in helping persons access assistance. This, combined with additional training for staff and priority in assessing client needs she said, will definitely improve the overall image of the Ministry, boost staff morale and ensure that stakeholder relations are improved.