Pandemic unemployment numbers fall again in Galway

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Another 1,465 people in Galway have come off the pandemic unemployment payment in the past week.

This week’s figures from the Department of Social Protection show 13,218 people in Galway in receipt of PUP, down from 14,683 last week.

Nationwide, the government is making €72 million in payments to just over 244,000 people still out of work due to COVID-19. In addition, approximately €1 million is being paid in PUP arrears this week.

From July 1, the PUP scheme will be closed to new entrants, and people who lose their job after that point will instead be directed to jobseekers or other pre-pandemic unemployment schemes.

It is currently expected that the pandemic unemployment payment scheme will be gradually wound down from September, with a reduction in rates starting from September 7.

Commenting on today’s figures, Minister Heather Humphreys said that this is the first time this year that the number of people on PUP has fallen below 250,000, and the lowest number since last October.

“This clearly demonstrates that Ireland is re-opening its economy successfully and I want to pay tribute to both workers and employers for the role they are playing.”

“It is very encouraging to see businesses re-open and employees returning to work, in particular in the accommodation and food services sector.”

While the accommodation and food services sector still has the largest share of people on PUP at 64,675, it also saw the largest decline in the past week, with 12,705 fewer people receiving the payment compared to last week.

This is followed by Wholesale and Retail Trade with 2,429 fewer people receiving the payment compared to last week, and the Arts, Entertainment and Recreation sector, which saw a decline of 1,285.

The PUP figures published today are in addition to the 171,699 people who were on the Live Register at the end of May.

Dublin remains the county with the highest number of people who are receiving the pandemic unemployment payment this week at 87,416, followed by Cork (22,532) and Galway.