Galway TD welcomes decision to delay transfer of PUP recipients to Jobseekers

galway daily news claire kerrane at dáil child maintenance

Roscommon-Galway TD Claire Kerrane has welcomed the Government’s announcement to delay plans to transfer recipients of the PUP to Jobseekers payments.

The government had intended to transition recipients of the current rate of €203 to standard Jobseekers payments and those who had not yet returned to their jobs because of public health guidelines would be required to actively seek work.

Speaking about the announcement, Deputy Kerrane said that it was very welcome, but also ‘incredibly belated’.

“For months I have been warning the Minister about the impact of moving people from the PUP to Jobseeker payments, particularly while many have not yet returned to work through no fault of their own,” said Deputy Kerrane.

“She has been aware of the stress and financial uncertainty this potential transition has caused for many workers and self-employed people, and yet has waited to make this announcement at the last minute.

“This week, just 3,486 people closed their PUP claim and we can see that the rate of those returning to work has now slowed dramatically. Updated public health guidelines have allowed many sectors to reopen this month, but there are sectors still waiting until October to open in full.”

The Sinn Féin TD said that with over 140,000 people still receiving the PUP, it is clear that we need supports in place for those who cannot yet return to work through no fault of their own.

“Almost 27,000 people are currently in receipt of the PUP rate of €203, and would have been moved to Jobseekers next week.

“The plan to transition PUP recipients to Jobseekers terms would have devastated the finances of thousands of workers still unable to return to work while their sector remains closed under public health advice.

“For those without the required number of PRSI contributions, this would have meant moving onto the means-tested Jobseeker’s Allowance which takes entire household income into account.”