COVID-19 assistance package needs to be more flexible – Mark Golding

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COVID-19 assistance package needs to be more flexible – Mark Golding

Wednesday, April 01, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Opposition spokesman on finance, Mark Golding is urging the Government to roll out a more flexible and comprehensive package of COVID-19 assistance that will capture all vulnerable groups and those outside of the formal economic system.

He said the measures announced over the past few weeks donot go far enough to cushion those in the lowest socioeconomic group.

The South St Andrew member of parliament argued that it is these Jamaicans who will feel the brunt of the current and future economic shock from the epidemic.

Golding was expressing Opposition concerns about the handling of the crisis yesterday at a digital press conference convened by the peoples National Party today.

He the observations being made by the Opposition are not meant as criticisms. "This isn't a time of green and orange or any other colour," he said.

The MP stressed that the consequences of being fiscally conservativewill at the end of the crisis, be greater than the cost of rolling out a more comprehensive package.

He implored that the Government develop bold measures.

"It is important to spend the money now so that the economy isn't damaged long term when the health crisis is at an end," he stressed, stating that the COVID-19 assistance programmes that have been outlined will leave many Jamaicans unprotected and exposed.

The Opposition spokesman pointed out that many are not in a position to comply with the formal requirements that would make them eligible to benefit.


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