COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme

The CARE Article Summary:

The Government of Jamaica's $10 billion COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme is slated for roll-out on Thursday (April 9), when target beneficiaries are invited to commence submitting applications.
The Government of Jamaica’s $10 billion COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme is slated for roll-out on Thursday (April 9), when target beneficiaries are invited to commence submitting applications.
  • The Government of Jamaica’s $10 billion COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme is slated for roll-out on Thursday (April 9), when target beneficiaries are invited to commence submitting applications.
  • The initiative aims to provide financial assistance to workers and businesses impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic.

The Government of Jamaica’s $10 billion COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme is slated for roll-out on Thursday (April 9), when target beneficiaries are invited to commence submitting applications.

The CARE programme was announced by Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. Hon. Nigel Clarke, during a digital press conference at Jamaica House on Friday (April 3). The initiative aims to provide financial assistance to workers and businesses impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic.

The CARE Programme package involves the temporary transfer of cash to individuals and businesses to cushion the pandemic’s economic impact.

Dr. Clarke said all applications should be made online on the Finance Ministry’s website – www.mof.gov.jm – once they have the requisite qualifying information.

@AndrewHolnessJM: Details of the CARE programme, the government’s financial relief system, will be available in brochures, the Sunday papers and online. Applications open on April 9, 2020. – @DrNigelClarkeJa

“Persons will be required to submit information that identifies them: their name, taxpayer registration number (TRN), phone number…as well as information about their bank accounts. Payments will be made automatically to the bank accounts, once those have been verified and validated,” he explained.

The Minister advised that CARE programme applicants who do not possess bank accounts, will have the option of suggesting a remittance company of their choice “where the funds could be directed and for them to collect those funds on producing identification that matches the TRN on the application”.

He pointed out that the programme is geared towards vulnerable individuals and businesses affected by COVID-19.

Dr Nigel Clarke: The CARE Programme brochure is now available. Download your copy at http://wecare.gov.jm The CARE Programme is designed to help cushion the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on individuals and businesses. Applications open online April 9th. #WeCARE#CoViD19Response

“We’ll have a… benefit called a compassionate grant for which any Jamaican can apply, as long as that Jamaican is not formally employed [nor] receiving a benefit from any other component of the CARE programme,” Dr. Clarke informed.

He reiterated that there is also a segment targeting small businesses across Jamaica, which can qualify once their taxes have been paid and they have employees who qualify for a one-time grant.

Dr. Clarke further indicated that there will also be benefits for persons who perform functions normally registered by Municipal Corporations. They include: barbers and hairdressers, beauty therapists and cosmetologists, bar owners and nightclub owners/operators.

Benefits will also be extended to persons registered with the Transport Authority, Public Passenger Vehicle (PPV) licensees and those registered with the Tourism Product Development Company Ltd. (TPDCo), the Jamaica Union of Travelers Association (JUTA), Maxi Taxi Association and the Jamaica Co-operative Automobile and Limousine Tours Ltd. (JCAL).

Additionally, Dr. Clarke informed that the Government is in dialogue with representatives of the Household Workers Association of Jamaica, pointing out that “we will be making specific provisions for persons under certain circumstances”.

He pointed out that detailed information on the CARE programme will be provided via brochures being distributed and will be available online on the Ministry’s website and social media platforms.

Source: The Jamaica Information Service

Applications For CARE – COVID-19 Assistance Open April 9

Minister of Finance and the Public Service Dr Nigel Clarke has maintained that the Government’s approach to cushioning the impact of COVID-19 in Jamaica is to target those who are most affected.

COVID-19 has disrupted the income of many Jamaicans with the tourism sector being the hardest hit. A call centre will be set up to field queries from prospective applicants of the COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) programmes.

“We’re not going to be able to cover every single eventuality – that’s not going to be possible. It’s a diverse country with a very diverse set of circumstances,” Clarke said on Friday. The finance minister was addressing journalists at a Gleaner Editors’ Forum at the newspaper’s North Street offices in Kingston.

Recently, Clarke detailed the Holness administration’s $10-billion COVID contingency package to alleviate the harsh effects of the pandemic on Jamaicans. He announced the plan while making his closing presentation to the Budget Debate in Parliament.

Applications for payment under the programmes will open on April 9 and corroboration from employers will be crucial to the process.

“The challenge is just verification and we want to be in a position to report to the Jamaican people that those who have benefited are those who are deserving,”Clarke said.

Online Applications

Online applications will be required for certain categories while those for craft vendors and market vendors are likely to have a manual format.

“For other categories, it might be necessary to have manual as well but we want the vast majority to be online because that allows for much greater accountability, much greater transparency and much better governance,” the finance minister said.

He explained that craft and market vendors who are in “good standing” with the municipal authorities are eligible for payments.

“Those individuals are registered with their municipal organisations, they have stall numbers and they are required to pay fees on a weekly basis,” he said, adding that they will be required to submit an application, a certified photograph, among other things.

@AndrewHolnessJM: The money we are giving back to people as support during this difficult time is not free money. It is money that we have collected from taxpayers. We, therefore, want to ensure that those receiving it are legitimate and identifiable. #Covid19Jamaica#COVID19Response

Beneficiaries of the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH) will receive an additional payment during the period April to June.

Benefits are provided under the Ministry of Labour and Social Security to children, the elderly, pregnant women, and people with disabilities. Families would usually receive two payments over the three-month term.

Clarke explained that the third payment will be equivalent to the usual payment and would redound to a 50 per cent increase in cash flow. He said allocations for the period will be increased by $1.1 billion, to cover the more than 130,000 families registered under the programme.

Source: judana.murphy@gleanerjm.com

Summary
COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme
Article Name
COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme
Description
The Government of Jamaica's $10 billion COVID Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Programme is slated for roll-out on Thursday (April 9), when target beneficiaries are invited to commence submitting applications.