Basseterre, St. Kitts, July 01, 2020 (SKNIS):
Over 8,000 employees and 1,568 self-employed persons in St. Kitts and Nevis, who suffered a loss of income due to the coronavirus pandemic, have benefited from a payout of some $22 million from the Social Security COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund.
Chief Executive Officer of the St. Christopher and Nevis Social Security Board, Antonio Maynard, shared the information on the June 30th edition of the Leadership Matters: Virtual Forum Series. He indicated that in April 7,827 eligible individuals received stimulus funds from a disbursement of some $7.5 million. The figures for May decreased to 6,575 persons. The payout disbursed for that month was $6.4 million.
In June, the number of workers and self-employed persons totalled 5,781. However, there were some 1,600 who qualified for relief payments but did not receive funds for the previous months. These persons will be paid retroactively for April and May as well as for the month of June. As such, the total disbursement for June is expected to be approximately 7.6 million. The funds will be paid over the next three days, Mr Maynard stated.
“Social Security is all about people, the economy, employment, and the well-being of workers and so the custodians of the Social Security Fund continue to play a key role in mitigating against this crisis,” CEO Maynard expressed.
“It is also important to note that this is not a regular benefit payment but instead a gratuitous intervention, a relief emergency payment if you wish, to assist affected persons in this economic crisis that we are facing,” he added.
The relief programme paid each insured person who is laid off or unemployed including self-employed persons, as a result of the impact of COVID-19, up to $1000 per month for a period of three months in the first instance.
Mr Maynard stated that countries around the Caribbean region initiated similar relief stimulus programmes through their Social Security Fund.