Vaz announces new protocols for BPO sector amid COVID-pandemic

Minister Daryl Vaz

The government has established a task force to implement new protocols for business process outsourcing (BPO) facilities as part of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Daryl Vaz, who has responsibility for investment at the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, the task force will include a number of State agencies, including the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Jamaica Constabulary Force, Ministry of Labour and Social Security, municipal corporations, Ministry of National Security, and the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management.

Vaz explained during a digital news conference at Jamaica House Monday that the measures in the Disaster Risk Management Enforcement Notice Number 4 are not designed to close down the BPO sector, but to breakdown the potential transmission of the virus that might be taking place in those operations.

He said the new protocols will ensure that all operators in the BPO sector implement preventative measures in their operations, give the regulatory bodies an opportunity to thoroughly inspect their operations, and ensure unified standards.

He added that inspections of all the BPO sites should be completed and signed off by next Monday. “That would mean that more than half of the 40,000 workers in the sector should be back at work within the one-week period,” Vaz stressed.

The BPO sector raked in roughly US$600 million last year.