PATH programme to be overhauled – PM Loop Jamaica

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Prime Minister, Andrew Holness, says that changes will be made to the Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH) to enable more families in need of support to be identified for benefits.

“We have decided that we are going to do a massive overhaul of the PATH programme in significant ways to ensure that the beneficiary identification system is far more targeted than it is now,” Holness said.

He was addressing the quarterly press briefing held at the Office of the Prime Minister on Thursday, August 3.

PATH is a social-safety-net programme, which provides conditional cash grants to vulnerable households within the population.

It is administered through the Ministry of Labour and Social Security.

The objectives of the programme are to increase educational attainment and improve health outcomes of the poor, alleviate poverty by increasing the value of transfer to the poor, reduce child labour by requiring children to have minimum attendance in school, and serve as a safety net for families.

Holness said that too often, when he visits communities, there are complaints regarding the programme and eligibility for qualification.

“There is clearly a refining that needs to happen in the entire beneficiary identification system for PATH, so that will be addressed to ensure that we are picking up those persons in our society who are genuinely in need of that social-safety-net support,” he pointed out.

Holness said the move will ensure that more deserving families benefit from the programme, while improving access to education for beneficiary children.

Additionally, he said more resources will be placed in a back-to-school programme “to ensure that all our students are able to go back to school in a meaningful way”.

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