BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, December 17, 2019 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) – The Team Unity Government of St. Kitts and Nevis has made provisions in its 2020 Budget for the continuation of the successful Poverty Alleviation Programme (PAP) that has brought much needed financial relief to the most vulnerable persons in society.

As indicated in the 2020 Budget Address by Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, a total of 40,000 transactions were processed for the Poverty Alleviation Programme totaling approximately $20 million as at September 2019.

The PAP provides a stipend of $500 monthly to households with a gross monthly income of less than $3,000.

While lending her support to the Appropriation (2020) Bill, 2019, Minister of State within the Ministry of Social Services, Senator the Honourable Wendy Phipps, stated that some 4,000 households across St. Kitts and Nevis are benefiting directly from this social assistance initiative.

Senator Phipps added, “It is undeniable that the Poverty Alleviation Programme has made a marked difference in the lives of the persons who are beneficiaries of this particular project.”

The honourable senator also used her insightful presentation in the National Assembly on Tuesday (December 17) to dispel the mischief that is being peddled by the naysayers of the Opposition surrounding the implementation and management of the year-old programme.

The minister stated clearly that all of the provisions that were put in place in terms of the Poverty Alleviation Programme were done so in tandem with the Social Protection Bill that had its first reading in March 2018.

“And what the Cabinet would have done in order to properly prepare for the implementation of the Poverty Alleviation Programme is to go into the Bill and activate, in advance, an inter-ministerial committee which the Bill calls for in the administration of social services and social justice for the people of this country who need help in being ensured that they can have a decent standard of living in keeping with the basic human rights conventions going back to 1948,” Minister Phipps said.

The Poverty Alleviation Programme was one of the major commitments made by Team Unity in the build up to the 2015 General Election.