More than 36,000 people returned to work last week

A further 36,200 people have returned to work in the last week, with numbers claiming the Pandemic Unemployment Payment now down to 543,200.
More than 36,000 people returned to work last week
Assistant General Secretary at the Department of Taoiseach Liz Canavan

A further 36,200 people have returned to work in the last week, with numbers claiming the Pandemic Unemployment Payment now down to 543,200.

That figure is down from a peak of 598,00 at the beginning of May, with the weekly cost of the payment at €190 million.

The Assistant General Secretary at the Department of Taoiseach Liz Canavan today said that another 28,400 people have notified the Department of Social Protection that they are returning to work. Of those, 21,100 will receive their last payment this week.

However, over half a million people are now in receipt of the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme, figures show. In total, 508,100 people have received at least one payment through their employer towards their salary.

Those payments are in addition to the 214,700 people who were reported on the Live Register as of the end of April.

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Regina Doherty said the fall in claims reflected the first phase of reopening the Irish economy.

“The peak demand for the Pandemic Unemployment Payment has passed in parallel with the flattening of the Covid-19 curve and each week, if the current progress on the health front holds firm, we will see an incremental drop on the numbers in need of this assistance. However, not everybody will be getting back to work in the first phases of the reopening of our society and, as I confirmed in the Dáil last week, the Pandemic Unemployment Payment will extend beyond the original June end date."

Public amenities, Ms Canavan said, were busier over the weekend but gardaí had reported largescale compliance with physical distancing guidelines. However, Ms Canavan warned that a hosepipe ban was "likely necessary" in the coming days as warm weather and extra demand on domestic water continues.

Ms Canavan asked people to be mindful of their water usage while at home, saying that people could use watering cans instead of hoses, for example.

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