Just over 153,000 people received the Pandemic Unemployment Payment this week, according to figures from the Department of Social Protection.
Around 4,400 PUP recipients closed their claims in the week with almost half of these working in the Accommodation and Food sector, the figures show.
The number of people receiving the Pandemic Unemployment Payment has fallen by almost 70% since February.
The Department said the total payment on the PUP this week amounted to €45.4 million.
“It is heartening to see more people return to work each week as we continue to move cautiously through our recovery from Covid-19,” Social Protection Minister Heather Humphreys said.
“As the economic recovery continues and new jobs are created, we want to ensure that people in receipt of income supports have the training, skills and most importantly the confidence to take on new roles,” she added.
The Department reminded workers who are returning to work that they must close their claim for the PUP on the day that they start back at work.
The Pandemic Unemployment Payment has been closed to new claimants since the beginning of July.
From next month, the PUP is to be gradually reduced on a tapered basis over a six-month period when it will be aligned with the standard jobseeker payments.
The top three rates of PUP will reduce by €50 in September when the maximum weekly rate of €350 will reduce to €300.
The current rate of €300 will reduce to €250 and the current rate of €250 will reduce to €203.
The new payment rates will be reflected in payments received on Tuesday, September 14th.
Two further phases of rate changes are scheduled to take place from mid-November and early February next year.
As PUP recipients go on to the €203 rate in each phase, they will be transitioned to standard jobseeker terms.
Article Source – 4,400 PUP recipients closed claims this week – RTE