23 Nov 2009

Federal help for foreigners in American Samoa put out of work by the tsunami

4:08 pm on 23 November 2009

The U.S. government is allowing foreigners, who are permanent residents of American Samoa, to apply for unemployment benefits under the federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance programme.

The programe became available in the middle of this month and will run until the same time in December for workers who lost their jobs due to the September 29th tsunami.

The scheme was initially open only to U.S. citizens and U.S. nationals, but the territorial government and the American Samoa Congressman, Faleomavaega Eni Hunkin, had argued foreigners who are permanent residents should also qualify.

American Samoa is still seeking federal approval to allow another category of foreigners to qualify - those individuals who need to renew work visas every year.