Cabinet Mercelina Prioritizes Inclusiveness and Communication with Public Servants

Several members of CoM and EEC representatives.​
PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — On Friday morning, May 10, 2024, the Council of Ministers (CoM) met with the newly proposed Employee Engagement Council (EEC), composed of 17 members from various departments and executing bodies within government.
This initiative follows an independent employee satisfaction survey and recent exit interviews. The EEC analysed the survey results, which highlighted concerns over primary labor conditions, and has formulated 21 recommendations aimed at four specific target groups: colleagues, middle management, secretary generals, and political leaders, along with six general recommendations.
Key priorities identified include enhancing open communication, implementing the full human resource cycle throughout the government, and increasing transparency through the publication of annual plans and quarterly progress reports, which are
supported by monthly updates from middle management. The recommendations also emphasize policy-based budgets and promoting career development opportunities.
The intention is to establish the EEC as a permanent and independent council via a ministerial decree and repeat the employee satisfaction survey in 2026.
The Prime Minister, Dr. Luc Mercelina, affirmed the government’s commitment to ensuring that civil servants are not only held accountable, but also enhancing support for them. He proposed small, tangible improvements, such as a better upkeep of the Government Administration Building’s exterior.
Further, the Prime Minister advocated for the inclusion of public-school representation within the EEC to ensure a comprehensive approach to employee engagement across all sectors.
Another proposal was to extend the mental health support services provided by the Company Counselor in the Department of Personnel & Organization of the Ministry of General Affairs to the police force.
CoM has agreed to meet regularly, once every two months. to monitor and evaluate the implementation of the recommendations. The next meeting is scheduled for July 12, where the focus will be on developing methods to recognize and reward staff contributions and to conduct a baseline measurement (‘nulmeting’) of current government vacancies.
The meeting is an integral part of the R.I.S.E. (Leadership Excellence through Relationship Building, Insight, Skills, and Empowerment) Onboarding Program, aimed at delivering insights in the context of CoM and strengthening relationships both within and beyond government.