Calls For Illness Benefit Changes To Be Extended Into Universal Corona Virus Support Payment

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Vulnerable workers affected should have access to payment immediately says TD

Bríd Smith, People Before Profit TD has called on the Government to extend the new illness benefit payment to wider layers of workers and others affected by Covid 19.

The TD said the payment should be made available to all parents who may have to stay home to care for children and that at-risk categories of workers and others should be allowed to self-certify and avail of the €305 payment.

At present the payment is made only to those diagnosed with Covid 19 or who are advised by the HSE to self-isolate.

The TD added that the payment should be wider and its availability more flexible and cover vulnerable workers facing layoffs and cuts in hours as a result.

She said: “The calls for social distancing and self-isolation will only work if we provide the social support and payments needed to help workers and their families through this period”

She added: “The next steps in giving the supports needed will have to include bans on evictions, and insuring that people’s electricity, heating and power are maintained in all households for the entire period.”