PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – On Monday, July 6, 2020 member of parliament Claudius Buncamper forwarded a letter to the minister of VSA,
Minister Richard Panneflek regarding the distribution of the unemployment benefits.
In his letter to the minister the MP quoted a complaint that he received and which he decided to forward it to the minister in order to get the correct response.
“The unemployment benefit doesn’t seem to work. Lots of people applied for it but got a food box instead. Food box doesn’t pay the bills.
When you send an email to complain, nobody answers.”
Based on the complaint, the Member of Parliament submitted a number of questions to the minister, querying how many persons have applied for financial
assistance and how many have been denied or granted a food box instead?
The MP asked what is the average value of the food box compared to the unemployment benefits, and how often do recipients receive a food box.
The MP further enquired if any arrangements are being made to assist persons with their utilities bills, and asked if there is a timeframe for those who requested
financial assistance to get a response.
MP Buncamper stated that many applications for financial assistance are being jeopardized because the applicants are unable to get their stamped documents from
the tax office or the receivers and queried if this requirement could not be waved as it is government who is unable to comply.
The process for applying for unemployment benefits was also questioned as the Member of Parliament wants to know which entities or departments are involved in the process.
The MP wants to know “how exactly it works” so that he too could understand the entire process.