Suggestion for the CARE programme

Letters to the Editor

Suggestion for the CARE programme

Friday, April 10, 2020

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Dear Editor,

The following is is an open letter to the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service regarding the newly implemented COVID-19 Allocation of Reso urces for Employees (CARE) programme:

First of all, let me commend the Government on its strides to protect the country from a COVID-19 outbreak, as well as to earmark financial resources to assist the most vulnerable and needy people in our society.

I greatly anticipated the opening of the online wecare.gov.jm platform on Thursday morning, as I stood ready to assist those in the communities I serve, to apply for the benefits they may qualify for, on their behalf.

As a pastor, I am very well aware that most of whom the compassionate grants are geared toward do not possess smart devices and or Internet access to make the online application. The same may be true of some of the other categories. Besides, as user-friendly as the platform is, and as simple as the application process is, many of these individuals do not possess the basic technical skills to navigate online. Thus, it becomes necessary for them to be assisted by well-wishers.

In this regard, there needs to be a revision of the website, for it limits the number of applications from one location (IP address). The error message I last got read, “Whoa! Requests from your location are coming in really close together. Pardon us while we enforce request distancing.” Also, there have been a number of glitches with the platform, perhaps due to the online traffic.

I know that the intent of limiting the number of applications per device is to protect the programme from unscrupulous people, but do remember that the information submitted for each applicant is verifiable and that monies will be sent to the applicant and not the person who does the signing up for him or her. Thus, there are security measures already in place.

I have young, willing, technical personnel who are on standby to assist the people in the vicinity of Brown's Town to sign up for this assistance. So, I crave a revision of the number of attempts each device is allowed to make in signing up individuals. This will greatly benefit those who are truly in need and cannot do the same for themselves.

Jermaine Johnson

Senior pastor

Brown's Town District of Seventh-day Adventists

jjohnson@njcadventist.org


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