According to Mrs. Oureika Lennon-Petty, Planning Officer at NEMA, Mr. Valentine Lindsay has been appointed Chairman of the Housing and Shelter Sub-Committee of the National Disaster Plan, from January, 2021.
Mr. Lindsay, who replaces outgoing Chairman, Mr. Gene Knight, was nominated for the position by Minister of Human Settlement et al, Hon. Eugene Hamilton. He begins his tenure leading a committee that is critical to the national disaster response mechanism in extremely trying times, but says that he is ready for the challenges faced by the Federation in the current COVID19 timelines, based upon his past experiences and present will to serve country and community to the best of his capacity.
He is defined as a highly skilled individual, having obtained an M.B.A. in 2012 from University of Leicester, England; an Executive Diploma in Management in 2001 from UWI, Cave Hill; Passes in Law, Economics & Public Affairs in 1997 at St. Kitts Business College among other passes and distinctions.
Mr. Lindsay worked as Chairman of the Board of National Housing Corporation (NHC) from 2015 to 2020 and is affiliated with St. Kitts-Nevis Economic Society; St. Kitts-Nevis Taekwondo Federation; Champs for Charity and Women of Purpose Foundation. He also began his career as a Teacher at Basseterre High School in 1989 and ended his tenure in 1992.
He presently serves as Special Advisor to Hon. Eugene Hamilton, within the Ministry of Human Settlement.
The Housing and Shelter Committee comprises, the Chairman, Public Works Department’s Senior Engineer along with representation from:
- St. Kitts-Nevis Chamber of Industry & Commerce
- Min of Social Development
- St. Kitts Evangelical Association
- St. Kitts Christian Council
- Government Building Inspectors
- Hotel and Tourism Association
- Department of Lands and Surveys
- NEMA, Ex Officio Member
- Nevis Disaster Management Department.
Each year, the Committee meets to assess suggested buildings and to make recommendations for use as Emergency Shelters, to be approved by The Cabinet. “This activity is spearheaded by a small group of players, led by the Chairman and including NEMA’s Planning Officer and District Volunteers, to be determined by the location of the proposed shelters” Mrs. Petty said.
The Committee is also responsible for creating an Action Plan, including a plan to identify buildings for all types of disasters and ensuring that the proposed list of shelters is presented to Cabinet via NEMA, in a timely manner.
The Housing and Shelter Committee is also responsible for the following Preparedness and Response actions, according to Mrs. Petty.
- To ensure physical integrity of all building chosen as shelters
- To ensure adequate sanitary facilities are available in all buildings chosen as shelters
- To ensure that adequate shelter is provided for the vulnerable and the homeless, during an emergency
- To assist in preparing, participating in and assessing joint annual exercises with all response services and the Disaster Management Offices, and to submit after-action reports to the Disaster Management Offices
- To design specific guidelines for emergency housing after disasters in collaboration with appropriate agencies
- Coordinate shelter management from the NEOC
- Identify needs from shelters and inform the Welfare and relief Supply Sub Committee in the NEOC
- Implement emergency housing solutions.
Outgoing Chairman, Gene Knight says that he wishes Mr. Lindsay well and has pledged his support as needed, during a meeting to familiarise the incoming Chairman with his new role on the National Disaster Plan, at NEMA.
He presently serves as Special Advisor to Minister of Human Settlement, Hon. Eugene Hamilton.