By: SKNIS, Press Release
BASSETERRE, St. Kitts (SKNIS) — The launch of the Sugar Workers’ Restoration Fund (SWRF) office marks a momentous occasion as it signifies the government’s commitment to ensure that former sugar workers are adequately compensated for their efforts in nation building.
The office, which was launched today (May 18), will ensure that the EC $16 million, granted by the Government of Venezuela on March 30, is paid to the former St. Kitts Sugar Manufacturing Corporation (SSMC) workers in a manner that is “fair, accurate and transparent.”
Hon. Vance Amory, Senior Minister and Minister of Labour and Social Security, stated that the opening was significant for all persons both in St. Kitts and Nevis especially for the sugar workers whose well-being is of paramount interest.
“The labour and sacrifice of those stalwarts of the sugar industry, which underpinned the economy of our country, has to be acknowledged, recognised, chronicled and today we are here to begin the process of ensuring that those who are to benefit, will benefit from this exercise,” he stated.
Senior Minister Amory assured the workers that their “sacrifice was not in vain” and that this government has made this effort with “the great generosity of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.”
Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Timothy Harris stated that the government is working and will continue to work for the benefit of the sugar workers.
“You stand as living testament to the fact that the injustice is not yet corrected,” stated the Prime Minister. “You stand here in testimony to the truth which we pursued to the justice which my government has been pursuing on your behalf. Today we are one step closer to delivering to you.”
Prime Minister Harris continued by stating that the opening marks a significant milestone in the now more than three month old administration. “We are working for you the people of St. Kitts and Nevis,” he emphasized.
Opening hours for the SWRF office, located at the CLICO Building, South Independence Square Street, are from Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Saturday’s from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. To contact the office call 467-1914/1915 or 1916 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The secretariat will receive and process applications from former sugar workers following the guidelines of the criteria and documentation, research and review committees.
It must be noted that completing and submitting the application form does not in any way entitle a claimant or his/her beneficiaries to the payment of any benefit(s). Rather each claim will be subject to established criteria, and only claims that satisfy the criteria will result in the payment.
Payment to sugar workers would begin by September 2015.