July 23, 2020
Income supports must be protected – Claire Kerrane TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Social Protection Claire Kerrane TD has criticised the Government’s decision to cut income supports. 

Teachta Kerrane said: “I welcome the extension of the PUP until April. However, the tapering out of payments will come as a blow to those who are out of work due to Covid-19. 

 “From 10th August, tens of thousands of people will have their payments cut by between €50 and €100. Many workers and families are already pushed to the edge financially and these cuts will cause them to struggle further. 

“At a time when household debt is on the rise and families are already struggling to get by, we need to see income supports protected. “I am concerned this risks placing thousands of workers and families at risk of poverty. 

“I am also concerned that over 15,000 people who are self-employed in this State have already seen their Pandemic Unemployment Payment reduced to €203. This is based on 2018 tax returns and for many self-employed people this is not be a true reflection of their earnings. 

“Self-employed people should be allowed to make a self-declaration to Revenue on their 2019 earnings as the basis for their PUP rate, to ensure they are not unfairly treated. 

“Just days ago, this government gave three of their ‘Super Juniors’ a pay increase of over €16,000. Now, the same government is cutting the incomes of those who need support most. It is a stark showing of where this government’s priorities lie and illustrates why they cannot be trusted to protect the interests of ordinary workers and families.”

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