Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Employment Affairs and Social Protection John Brady has said that the government must pay arrears to recipients of the Covid10 Pandemic Unemployment Payment as swiftly as possible. He made the call after being informed by the Department that it could take months before repayments are made to recipients.
Speaking today, Deputy Brady said;
“Today in the Dáil while speaking during the revised estimates I called on the Minister for Social protection to prioritise the payment of arrears to the large number of recipients of Covid19 PUP that are due them.
“During my contribution I highlighted one recipient who didn’t receive any payment
“Unfortunately, the Department of Social Protection had the incorrect information for the person in question and this caused a delay in the payment being processed. Payment was eventually received on May 19th but was simply a one payment of €350 not the amount backdated as expected. This person didn’t receive any payment for 8 weeks and was expecting the full arrears as due.
“While this is just one example, there are many others facing severe financial pressure due to the similar circumstances from the Department.
“Having contacted the Department on behalf of the constituent I was informed that it will take a number of months before the issue of arrears is dealt with by the department.
“I am aware and disappointed to see that the plan for backdating money under the Covid PUP scheme is still unclear to those people who are depending on this money.
“Sinn Féin will continue to hold this caretaker Government to account on this issue and ensure that ordinary people are given the supports they need during this extremely difficult time and that they are not put further into financial difficulty.”