JIS News

Minister of Labour and Social Security, Pearnel Charles, yesterday (July 9) announced that an additional 38,000 persons who were previously not accepted on the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH), would now be qualified and included in the pogramme.
This has resulted from a modification in the selection process or the Beneficiary Identification System (BIS), in June, to make it easier for the poor and vulnerable to be accommodated under the programme.
Giving details in a statement to the House of Representatives, Mr. Charles said the Ministry recognized that the qualification method may have excluded some genuinely needy persons.
“I have been advised that people may go to the home and see a television or a fridge, and say that you are not qualified, or people might be living in rented houses, with flush toilets, and they were disqualified. This Government has instructed that this sort of means test be removed and any person who was rejected previous to this time.. and we have found 38,000 such persons on file.should be placed on the programme,” he said. The Minister explained that these persons do not need to re-apply.
The BIS was developed by the Planning Institute of Jamaica and is used to select PATH beneficiaries. It is a proxy means test, which utilizes a range of socio-economic and demographic information.
Meanwhile, State Minister, Andrew Gallimore pointed out that the test has not been changed, but has only been modified.
“The test is exactly the same way it was. All that has changed to accommodate all the people who were not accommodated, is that the score that is required has been lowered, therefore, more people who would not have been able to come in under that score, will now be there. For example, when you speak to somebody having a television or a fridge, those things would have given them a positive contribution to a score, which may have lifted them above the threshold. The threshold has been moved to accommodate them,” he explained.