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Oct 29, 2020

Unemployment Relief Program, Still Not Benefiting Everyone

The second phase of the Unemployment Relief Programme is winding down with less than two weeks away from a change of government.  Prime Minister Dean Barrow, at his last press conference, alluded to the start of a third phase in early November, just prior to the general elections; however, that date or whether or not government will proceed with the initiative has not been confirmed.  Six months ago, James Young Jr. was terminated from his job as a deliveryman and subsequently applied for financial assistance through the programme.  While he qualified and was approved, he is yet to receive any monies and the programme, for all intents and purposes, is quickly winding down.  He shared his story with News Five and the headache that he’s had in attempting to receive help.


Voice of: James Young Jr., Unemployed

“I lost my job since March, since the COVID [situation] got hectic.  You know, I was delivering food but due to the circumstances [regarding] COVID, they had to let go some of the drivers.  So since then I had to park my cycle, but mein, it’s like one thing to the other.  They stole my cycle and I haven’t been working since March.  So that’s why I have you here.  I was depending on the assistance from the government.  I got approved, got the text and when I messaged the people, [there was] no answer, no time.”


Isani Cayetano

“Now you went through the process of filling out the paperwork and everything, you qualified for the program and were approved.  Talk to us about that part, receiving the approval either by text message or by email, however they sent you back that message.”


Voice of: James Young Jr.

“Well, I got approved on May eleventh, I think it was.  I got the confirmation text and after that I kept sending them messages, hoping for them to answer me about when to pick it up, blah, blah.  Months and months keep going by and no answer.  And then I saw the story when like, the thousand top up cards they call it.  The thousand to up cards that, you know, people haven’t been picking up.  So I thought my one was hopefully in that thousand, you know, but still, up to this day bro, no nothing.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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