Your Excellency,

Subject: Dominica -Diaspora Policy Paper.

By this time, you will have been advised by our president, Dr. Clayton Shillingford, that the Dominica Academy of Arts and Sciences (D.A.A.S.) has been requested by the Prime Minister of Dominica to consult with appropriate persons and to draft a Policy paper for the consideration of government, which will establish a framework for relationships with nationals abroad.

I have been asked to chair the drafting committee and along with my colleagues as listed hereunder, we have been engaged over the past three weeks in establishing a feasible framework for such consultations. No funds have been allocated for this exercise, which severely limits opportunities for face-to-face contact. Full particulars of the process underway are available from the following website which we invite you to visit

As part of this consultation, too, we solicit your comments on a number of issues, which relate to the paper under preparation, a copy of which is attached. We crave your indulgence in giving this your highest priority. Expectations are for submission of the Draft Paper by early October and accordingly we urge on you a response date by September 15th, 2004 if at all possible.

I thank you in advance for what I know will be your enthusiastic support and undertake to provide you with a copy of the paper, when available.

Respectfully Yours,

W.R.Franklin Watty (Chair),
Dr J.Davison Shillingford,
Dr Leroy Mitchell,
Ms Mona George-Dill,

ISSUES for consideration:
Issue 1.
Possibilities of establishing and maintaining a Registry of Nationals, indexed by education, skills experience and availability (commercially and voluntarily).

Issue 2.
Methods of facilitating access to and delivery of services to nationals abroad, including but not limited to such services as passport replacement and renewals, CARICOM Identity Cards, Work Permits, government documents such as Birth, Marriage and Death Certificates, Travellers Emergency Assistance, interventions in Justice System proceedings, information on government policy towards returning nationals, tourism/investment and trade promotion data.

Issue 3.
Number and location by type of Government overseas representation. A description of the role and function of each possibly with regard to a mission statement, if one exists. An overview of the number and range of activities performed over a representative period.

Issue 4.
Are there definitive criteria which guide the location and type of representation established overseas? Embassies/ Permanent Missions/ Joint High Commissions/ Consulates/ Honorary Consulates/ Information Services/ Trade Offices/Tourism Offices.

Issue 5.
Are there any suggestions on how cost-effectiveness of Overseas Representation can be determined?

Issue 6.
Has any overseas national office ever designed and implemented a program for enlisting the voluntary assistance of qualified nationals in any aspect of its operations and functions? Is this feasible, and if so, in what areas.

Issue 7.
How important is it to have a Government Information Facility in association with each embassy/consulate (including an automatic depository for all OECS and CARICOM publications)? Comment on present status, potential and probability.