Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 17, 2015 (SKNIS):  Tomorrow (September 18) marks a significant occasion as former sugar workers will start to receive compensation for their hard work on the sugar estates.

The distribution of cheques comes at an opportune time as St. Kitts and Nevis celebrates 32 years of Independence and has therefore been added to the list of activities.

A ceremony will be held at the CLICO Building, South Independence Square Street, to kick start the distribution of cheques and will broadcast live on ZIZ radio (96.1) and streamed on at 10:00 a.m.

A total of 1861 former sugar workers or their beneficiaries are set to gain from the EC$16 million granted by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in support of the government’s compensation initiative.

Dr.  Harris noted that the government has doubled the pool of beneficiaries compared to the 968 initially paid during the first payout in 2005.

“The criteria, which was decided by the Sugar Workers’ Restoration Fund (SWRF) committee and approved by Cabinet, outlined that the applicants or beneficiaries must have contributed to the advancement of the industry in one form or another and must have worked in the industry,” the Prime Minister explained. “It also includes that the application must have been completed by or on behalf of the worker. Years of service and average wage were all significant factors in the calculation of the payout. Total length of service was used, hence, absence at closure did not disqualify an applicant from benefiting.”


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