Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 10, 2020 (SKNIS)
The Ministry of Social Services has been giving its support to not only persons who were already vulnerable, but to persons who are now in need due to the COVID-19 pandemic, says Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Social Services, Janelle Lewis Tafari.
“What our Ministry has done as a part of the NEOC, we have been doing wellness checks with those persons who are our clients, [including] our food voucher assistance clients, our home care assistance clients, persons with disabilities, etc,” she said during a NEOC press briefing held on April 09. “We have been calling around to find out how they are doing, what their needs are and how we can assist.”
Mrs. Lewis Tafari added that there are several numbers persons can call if they need assistance including 466-7453, 466-9626 and 466-3874.
“We have been fielding and responding to all of these calls,” she said. “We have been able to assist persons who are caregivers whether their relatives, neighbours, friends, who have challenges, persons who are shut in who can’t go out and shop for themselves, who need assistance taking their insulin, etc.”
The permanent secretary said that these are persons who need permission from the commissioner to leave their homes during the lock-down order curfew to visit their loved ones.
“I’ve been able to process all of these requests, forward them to the commissioner and get the relevant clearance so that these persons who are restricted to their homes and can’t help themselves have the support and assistance that they need during this challenging time,” she said.
The ministry also addresses calls from persons who are facing situations such as job loss or reduced working hours.
“While there is a stimulus package in place, that is still being organized. We realise that payments are to be made