Exceptions possible on the conditions of the SZW emergency regulation

Since last Tuesday, applications can be made to the RCN-unit of Social Affairs and Employment (SZW) for an emergency regulation in connection with the coronavirus. This is a regulation that helps employers to retain personnel. Employees and self-employed entrepreneurs who no longer have an income can also apply for the emergency regulation. SZW has already received many applications.

SZW financial aid

An obstacle for many employers is that employees are not allowed to work within the hours for which they are making use of the regulation. The SZW unit has therefore decided, in consultation with the ministry, to make exceptions to this point, possible. Employers can submit a request to the SZW unit in which they explain why it is required  that work is performed while the company is shut down. This only applies to work that is necessary to be able to continue business activities after the crisis.

For example, the exception may apply to a hotel that no longer receives guests. Security, essential cleaning, or minor maintenance that cannot be postponed can then continue while making complete use of the regulation. Maintenance work that can also be carried out at a later date is not regarded as necessary work. Employers wishing to make use of this the exception can add a request to their application explaining their situation. SZW will assess the requests on reasonability.

Another exception to the regulation applies to self-employed persons. A condition for them to be eligible is that they must have been registered with a Chamber of Commerce in the Caribbean Netherlands on the 13th of March, 2020. In exceptional cases it is also possible to qualify without registration with the Chamber of Commerce. This may be the case, for example, for taxi drivers or fishermen. It must be established that the applicant is an independent entrepreneur. That is why in these situations SZW will inquire whether the self-employed person is known to the tax office .

More information about the emergency regulation and application forms is available at www.rijksdienstcn.com/covid-19. Completed forms with all necessary attachments can be sent to noodregelingSZW@RijksdienstCN.com. Entrepreneurs on Bonaire can contact the Chamber of Commerce for assistance with their application via steunloket@KvKbonaire.com. Individuals who need support can contact the SZW unit by telephone (Bonaire: +599 781 5555 or 781 5556, Saba: +599 416 5652, St. Eustatius: +599 319 -5693). In connection with social distance, we request you to make your request digitally where possible.