Temporary measures at RCN-unit SZW in regard to the results of hurricane Irma

The RCN Unit of Social Affairs and Labour will, in regard to the results of  hurricane Irma, take several temporary measures for a number of groups of inhabitants of Saba and St. Eustatius, and evacuees of St. Maarten. The measures concern the right to assistance and child benefit and in addition on work permits. State Secretary Klijnsma empathize with the people who are affected by the hurricane and calls on them to turn to the RCN unit of SZW if they need support!

Persons in the Assistance

• People on social assistance that, do not receive extra allowance, due to full and long-term incapacity or a partial AOV-benefit, can apply for a temporary extra allowance.

Residents who lost their income because they have become unemployed

Temporary assistance can be applied for by people who have Dutch nationality and lawfully reside on Saba or St. Eustatius, and have lost their income because the company they work by has no more work for them as a result of Hurricane Irma. This also applies to residents with a non-Dutch nationality that live more than five years on Bonaire, Statia or Saba. 

Damage to durable consumer goods

• Residents who have suffered from loss of durable consumer goods (e.g. bed, gas stove, refrigerator etc.) and who cannot pay for the replacement themselves can apply for special assistance.

• Special assistance is a provision in kind. Those who are eligible for this do not receive money, but the durable consumer good itself (e.g. bed, gas stove of refrigerator).

Child benefit for children who have been evacuated from St. Maarten
• People can apply for child benefit  for children under 18, who have been  evacuated from St. Maarten to Saba, St. Eustatius or Bonaire, who will stay there for an extended period of time and have the Dutch nationality.

Adult inhabitants of St. Maarten who came temporarily to Bonaire, St. Eustatius or Saba.
• Adult inhabitants of St. Maarten who came temporarily to Bonaire, St. Eustatius or Saba and have the Dutch nationality, can apply for general assistance. If they are entitled to this, depends on their financial situation.

Work permits

• For employers, work permits for certain professional groups can be issued faster (for example, for teachers and construction workers).

The Island Test temporarily does not apply in these cases.

However, the application needs to clarify in a separate letter why this is a case of additional labour as a result of Irma.

Application procedure

Application takes place through a special application form. For as much as possible employees of Social Affairs and Labour and/or officials of the Public Entity will visit persons in their homes. Of course, persons can also visit the offices of Social Affairs and Labour for the purpose of submitting an application.

Important to know:

• All measures are temporary until January 1st, 2018.

• Applications must be submitted before January 1st, 2018 at the Unit of Social Affairs and Labour.

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