by Devonne Cornelius
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Fifteen million dollars has been allocated by the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis to provide financial assistance to people who have been unemployed since March 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Hon. Dr. Timothy Harris, Prime Minister and Minister of Finance made the announcement at his July 8 press conference.
“We will implement another income support programme in the sum of $15 million to alleviate hardships on our citizens who remain unemployed since March 2020. These citizens of course must be registered with the Social Security Board. The Social Security Board will be able to verify whether or not you have returned to work,” the Finance Minister explained.
A monthly stipend of $1,000 will be paid for three months to people who qualify for the assistance.
Prime Minister Harris stated that people who have received more than $15,000 in severance payments will not be eligible for the assistance. People who are currently on the Poverty Alleviation Programme, who qualify for the Income Assistance Programme, will receive an additional $500.
In March 2020, the government unveiled a stimulus package for people whose income was impacted as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. It was administered by the Social Security Board and provided up to $1,000 to people who lost their employment, were laid off, or had reduced hours with earnings less than $1,000 per month. Registered self-employed persons also benefited from initiatives paid in March, April and June of 2020.
The assistance ended in September 2020 when some 3,000 people were paid up to $1,000.