FSM Information Services
President Panuelo Launches Low-Income Assistance Social Protection Programming; $7,000,000 to be Distributed to Eligible Households
PALIKIR, Pohnpei—On June 8th, 2021, His Excellency David W. Panuelo—President of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)—launched the Low-Income Assistance Social Protection Program. Developed by President Panuelo and funded by Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Low-Income Assistance program is a key component of the Nation’s larger Social Protection infrastructure.
Joining President Panuelo for the opening ceremony was the Honorable Esmond B. Moses, Vice Speaker of the FSM Congress, and the Honorable Ausen T. Lambert, Speaker of the Pohnpei State Legislature.
Citizens will recall that ADB is generously providing 14 million dollars ($14,000,000) for the purpose of the FSM’s Social Protection programming. Of this amount, seven million dollars ($7,000,000) are allocated for assisting zero-income and low-income households, with the intention to provide temporary cash relief for households outside of the formal labor sector, such as subsistence farmers and fishermen, and specifically such laborers who do not qualify for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) Program funded by the U.S. Department of Labor.
For the purpose of implementing the Low-Income Assistance program, the Department of Finance & Administration worked with the Mayors and Municipal-level COVID-19 Task Forces. After the Mayors and Municipal-level COVID-19 Task Forces distributed the application questionnaire, the Municipal Governments signed off on the forms to verify the authenticity of the application. Then, the Department of Finance & Administration checked household members’ income against the PUA Program database and the FSM Social Security database.
With over 16,000 applications received so far, the FSM National Government is prioritizing households with zero recordable income before moving to households with minimal income.
Citizens who are interested in applying for the Low-Income Assistance program who have not heard from the Department or their Municipal Government are encouraged to fill out the questionnaire and submit it to their Municipal Government. The questionnaire is available here: http://gov.fm/files/Application_for_Low_Income_Household.docx