Queue for STAP budget: “A kind of lottery”

At least 100,000 Dutch are expected to queue up this morning, with as many laptops, computers and phones as possible. Not to buy tickets to a popular concert or festival, but to apply for STAP grants.

This 1000 euro amount is for participation in a course or training and can be requested from UWV at different times of the year. For some, however, this leads to frustration as they continue to lag behind the net.

Because last year the budget ran out quickly in every round. There were no opportunities to apply for grants this year: in January the application round was delayed due to misconduct by course providers, and the following month there was such a massive disruption to UWV that the round was postponed to today.

Take your minutes and walk carefully

Greet Plaatzer noticed this too. After losing her job two years ago, she wanted to do an apprenticeship to improve her chances in the job market. He has now found a job where a protocol course would work well.

He’s been trying to come up with a budget for last year, but so far without success. “Due to a bug in UWV it didn’t work the first time, the second time I fished behind the net,” he says. “The third time I anxiously checked in to my vacation address an hour ago, but then there was this major disruption.”

Running therapist Marjolein de Ridder, who tried to budget for mindful gait training for pregnant women, also failed. “I just had a baby and I was in front of my laptop, smartphone and phone for hours. In fact, it was an absurd situation between the bottles.”

Hidden Meticulousness

Until two years ago, anyone could deduct the cost of education from their taxes. The downside was that very few people used it, because at the same time costs had to be increased. That’s why the STAP budget was developed so that everyone can follow a course in an accessible way.

But that makes it much more uncertain whether you can claim it as well. Getting through the queue is a matter of luck. “It’s kind of a lottery,” De Ridder says. “Recently funded people have basically the same opportunities as people who have never completed an apprenticeship.”

“In practice, it’s therefore a hidden deduction for me because training costs are no longer tax-deductible,” says mediator Maud Groenberg. “I have to go to courses related to my accreditation. Since I no longer have a budget, the state cost me a lot.”

Plaatzer is at the computer again this morning trying to get a scholarship for a protocol course. “I’ll stay until noon, then it’s over,” I said to myself.

De Ridder will try again, too. “I read that some people log in around 8am. Maybe I should try that too.” As for the budget, Groenberg gave up hope for now. Might try again later this year.

Source: NOS