The construction of a care facility for the elderly and physically challenged is one of the many plans outlined by new United Workers Party (UWP) candidate for the Salybia Constituency, Anette Thomas-Sanford.
Thomas-Sanford was chosen to replace Dr. Worrel Sanford who withdrew as the UWP candidate in the upcoming general election due, according to him, to compelling family matters.
She said at a press conference on Wednesday, that she has chosen to align herself with the UWP, because this is the party with the best plan and the team of individuals best equipped to grow the wealth of the Kalinago people.
“One of my first missions, if elected, is to construct a care facility for the elderly and physically challenged which will also serve residents from the east, providing them with 24 hour care,” she stated.
She said further that her vision for the future of the constituency has been shaped by the realities on the ground such as, “declining economic opportunities, a deficit in organized activities, including sports for young people, inadequate healthcare, declining agriculture…”
According to Thomas-Sanford, in order to achieve these goals, she has presented the following blueprint for prosperity of the communities.
A full revision of the Carib Act to reflect the provisions of the United Nations Declaration on the rights of Indigenous People (UNDRIP) and the Outcome Document of the World Conference on Indigenous People and the creation of a Kalinago financial institution that will provide grants and development finance to the Kalinago people form part of that blueprint for development.
“Propose a large contribution from the national budget of Dominica to the Kalinago people to address social needs and infrastructure, expansion of the primary healthcare system with the requisite resources to reach every house in the constituency, creation of youth centers in each of the communities to serve as places for recreation, and creative learning outside school,” Thomas-Sanford continued.
Her blueprint also proposes “to enhance economic growth by supporting economic development initiatives that foster and promote the constituency as a model community tourism destination with guest houses, sustainable fisheries and agricultural processing, revitalization of agriculture through climate smart and sustainable agricultural practices utilizing multi-crop production and post-harvest technology.”
Also forming part of this framework is an enhanced commitment to support the creative energies in music, performing arts, cuisine and other cultural pursuits, among others.
“From the framework that I have laid out, you can see that this campaign can’t only be about me; it must be about us,” she stated. “It should be about what we, in the Salybia Constituency, can do together.”
Thomas-Sanford stressed that her campaign must be about what can be possible after the twenty years of lopsided development and made it clear that her grassroots movement is about restoring a sense of unity, equal opportunity, a common purpose and a realization that the people of the Salybia constituency can change the old ways of doing things for the better.
“In this regard my team and I shall be visiting every home and we will meet with every resident of the Salybia Constituency,” she revealed.
Meantime, Thomas-Sanford expressed strong support for the UWP’s idea to amend the Constitution to give the Kalinago Chief a seat in the parliament of Dominica which she described as a step in the right direction.
“I support this wholeheartedly, because this initiative will give us another voice in parliament,” she noted. “The next Kalinago Chief will not be a guest of any one in the parliament of Dominica, she or he will speak on behalf of the Kalinago people as a member of parliament under a UWP government.”