THE NUMBER of people in Donegal receiving a Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) has jumped by 20 per cent this week.
There are now almost 11,000 people in the county in receipt of a PUP.
As of yesterday, October 27, there were 10,950 people receiving a PUP. That is up from 9,119 last week.
This week, the Department of Social Protection issued payments valued at €85.6 million, an increase of over €20 million from last week, to 295,860 people.
The number of people receiving a PUP payment this week represents an increase of 51,707 on the 244,153 people paid last week.
The sector with the highest number of people receiving a PUP payment this week is Accommodation and Food Service Activities (90,051). It is followed by Wholesale and Retail Trade (43,432) and Administrative and Support Service activities (25,656).
“This week’s figures reflect the economic impact of the decision to move to Level 5 of restrictions,” said Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys TD.
“I know this has been a really difficult few days, particularly for those who have temporarily lost their jobs or whose businesses have had to close. I know that people are worried about the next few weeks. They are worried about their families, their friends and their jobs.
“But I also know that we have it in us to suppress this virus and protect lives. So let’s redouble our efforts this week; Limit our contacts, work remotely where possible and stay within 5 kilometres of our home for exercise.
“This is in our gift. We have shown before that we can get this virus back under control and allow our economy to reopen again.”
PUP is now paid at four rates. With effect from 16 October:
– those with prior gross weekly earnings below €200 will continue to receive a rate of €203 per week.
– those with prior gross weekly earnings of €200 to €299.99 will continue to receive €250 per week.
– those with prior gross weekly earnings of €300 to €399.99 will continue to receive €300 per week.
– those with prior gross weekly earnings of €400 or more will receive a rate of €350 per week.
Existing recipients of PUP who previously earned more than €400 gross have had their PUP rate automatically increased and have received the higher rate of €350 in their payment this week. The other three rates of PUP (€203, €250 and €300) remain unchanged.