‘Covid-19 emergency wage will save Wicklow jobs’ – TD
The introduction of the new emergency unemployment supports will help save jobs in Wicklow, a local TD has said.
Under the changes announced earlier this week the Government is to increase the Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Support payment for people who have been laid-off due to the virus from €203 to €350.
The payment will also apply to the self-employed affected by the virus. However, people who are already unemployed due to reasons other than Covid-19 will remain on the usual Jobseekers’ Benefit of €203.
An emergency wage subsidy scheme is also being introduced, a move which was championed by local TD and Fianna Fáil health spokesperson Stephen Donnelly. Under the scheme the State will pay 70% of a worker’s salary up to a cap of €410 per week net – the equivalent to the after tax income of a worker on around €38,000.
Workers earning between €38,000 and €76,000 will be entitled to assistance capped at €350, while workers earning above €76,000 will be excluded from the scheme.
The scheme costing an estimated €3.7 billion will initially run for 12 weeks.
Wicklow employers will be free to top-up the government’s element of the salary.
The scheme is targeted at companies hit by the collapse of economic activity triggered by Covid-19 – and employers seeking to avail of it would have to demonstrate a reduction in income of at least 25 per cent, along with cash flow difficulties.
Welcoming the new mewasures, Deputy Donnelly (pictured below) said: “I was calling for more to be done to help workers in Wicklow when the first round of measures were introduced.
“It is vital that the connection between companies and their employees is maintained which is what these changes do. We need to leave the county’s economy in the best possible place to recover after we defeat this virus.
“I also welcome the increase in the Covid-19 support payment from €203 to €350. It is now vital Wicklow residents who need this money to survive are given as easy access as possible to the payments.
“This is an incredibly stressful time for people who do not need the added stress of dealing with a mountain of red tape just so they can put food on the table.”