Presentation of Dr. Soomer to Parliament
~ Hon. Dr. June Soomer to address Parliament on “Development Justice” at the initiative of MP Heyliger-Marten ~
MP Grisha Heyliger-Marten said that she looks forward to the presentation to Parliament by Hon. Dr. June Soomer during a CCAD meeting scheduled for 2 pm. on June 13th.
“I am very pleased to have been able to arrange to have an experienced and decorated scholar and diplomat like Dr. Soomer share her knowledge with Parliament and the people of Saint Martin”, Heyliger-Marten stated in a press release issued on Tuesday evening.
“My faction and that of MP Sarah Wescot-Williams have been in contact with Dr. Soomer since the latter part of last year, and as a true Caribbean regionalist, Dr. Soomer has gracefully offered to combine her regional travel with a visit to St. Martin. It is a privilege to have her on the island to share and exchange views on Saint Martin’s long-term sustainable development”, according to Heyliger-Marten.
Dr. Soomer has diverse experiences through her work in the diplomatic, financial, and education sectors obtained through over thirty years of academic and professional experience functioning at the managerial, operational, and technical levels. She received her Ph. D from the University of the West Indies and has a sound understanding of contemporary development issues and continues to advocate for equality and equity in sustainable development.
Dr. Soomer currently serves as the Chair of the Open Campus Council of the University of the West Indies, as a member of the United Nations Permanent Forum of People of African Descent, and as a member of the Saint Lucia Reparations Committee. She served as Saint Lucian Plenipotentiary Ambassador to CARICOM and the OECS with responsibility for Diaspora Affairs, was an OECS Commissioner, and was the Secretary General of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS).
Dr. Soomer has received numerous awards, in the areas of Central Banking, Education, Diplomacy, Regionalism, Development, and Leadership. She is also a consultant and recently completed the Sustainable Development Plan for the Virgin Islands (British).
“During the public debate on the budget for 2023, I referred specifically to the Sustainable Development Plan for the BVI which was drafted by Dr. Soomer and unanimously adopted by the entire House of Assembly of the BVI”, Heyliger-Marten said. According to the MP, the plan combines sustainable development, capacity building, constitutional reform, public education and awareness, reparatory justice, and other important objectives based on the needs and wishes of the people of the BVI in one guiding document.
“As I pointed out during the 2023 budget debate, the Government of Saint Martin should use the BVI’s plan and approach towards addressing the nation’s needs and development as an example. I therefore look forward to constructive deliberations based on Dr. Soomer’s presentation which will hopefully contribute to our nation’s sustainable development, Heyliger-Marten concluded.