Distribution of the first prepaid cards intended to provide emergency financial assistance for modest families in difficulty post-Irma, have begun on St Martin, the Ministry of Overseas France said Friday.
These cards were introduced by Prime Minister Édouard Philippe, during his visit to St Barts and St Martin, two months after the passage of the category 5 hurricane, which ravaged the two islands.
The first prepaid cards were distributed Thursday, November 23, by the public finance centre in Marigot. The amount of €300 per adult and €100 per child (with a ceiling of €900 per family) can only be used on the French side of the island.
Valid until January 31, 2018, the cards do not allow the withdrawal of cash but can be used in all businesses with a payment terminal, the same as a traditional bank card, said the Ministry and Philippe Gustin, the interdepartmental delegate for reconstruction, in a joint statement.
In total, these cards will be delivered to 120 affected homes in St Barts and 4,000 in St Martin.