"Building a Seamless Dominica, in which overseas and resident Dominicans effectively dismantle their social and psychological barriers in the interest of all, is a task long overdue. Because these barriers are of our own making, we can remove them easily, if we are willing". (Raglan Riviere)
How to Go About It - The PlanWe recommend a 3-step action plan as follows:
- Obtain and publish an official policy statement from the ministry responsible for Diaspora Affairs on the recognition and establishment of a Seamless Dominica
- Identify and bring together a small group of committed overseas and resident Dominicans who are willing to spearhead the attainment of a Seamless Dominica
- Group to develop a set of achievable, joint projects between overseas and resident Dominicans
The Plan will be guided by the principle that "actions speak louder than words". It is an action plan. These barriers of separation have been examined, analyzed and debated ad infinitum but without any resolution. The principle recognizes that -
Working together willingly provides a learning environment, which can build trust, understanding, tolerance, respect, admiration, co-operation, loyalty and love for one another.
This environment is characteristic of the institution of family where interdependency is vital for both individual and sustained family growth.
The Team of Overseas and Resident Nationals
Members of the group to spearhead this effort should have a variety of experiences which suitably qualify them for leadership as follows:
- They must all abhor the existence of the barriers between overseas and resident nationals.
- They will have to be dedicated and committed to removing these barriers.
- They will have to be accomplished leaders in both their respective Diaspora and Dominica communities.
An Official Policy Statement
An official policy statement from the ministry for Diaspora Affairs should, initially, be in the form of a parliamentary declaration, which recognizes that Dominican nationals living overseas are citizens, like residents at home, with all rights and privileges. Such a declaration accepts that living overseas can in no way deny or deprive citizens their right to participate fully in the development of their homeland, Dominica, to which they have pledged allegiance.
A more detailed and comprehensive Diaspora Policy will be promulgated in due course.
Achievable Joint Projects
These projects will be the medium in which the basic tenets of collaboration operate for the common good. It will be the vehicle that will break down the man-made barriers between nationals overseas and at home and bind us together. Projects will focus on what is currently required in accordance with the official Strategic Development Plan for Dominica.
"Before God and all mankind, I pledge allegiance to the flag of the Commonwealth of Dominica and to the Sovereign Republic for which it stands; my love, my loyalty and skills, in the service of Dominica and my fellow Citizens. I promise to work diligently and help build a prosperous and peaceful Nation." - (Dominica Pledge of Allegiance).