More than 3,000 people in Cork have closed their claim for a Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) over the past week.
Figures published by the Department of Social Protection today show 30,600 people will receive a PUP tomorrow, down from 33,900 last week.
The figure represents a drop of more than 50 per cent since May 5th when 61,900 people in Cork received the payment.
While the scheme was due to end next month, reports over the weekend suggest that it will be extended until next year, with an announcement expected in the coming days.
Nationally, the Department of Social Protection is issuing pandemic unemployment payments to 313,800 people this week.
In the past seven days, 28,700 people have closed their claim for a PUP and some 13,100 will be receiving their final payment tomorrow, 21st July.
The top three sectors in which employees are returning to work this week are Accommodation and Food Services; Wholesale and Retail Trade, Repair of Motor Vehicles and motorcycles; and Construction.
Minister for Social Protection, Community and Rural Development and the Islands, Heather Humphreys said the figures show that increasing numbers of people are returning to work as businesses large and small throughout the entire country emerge from the Covid-19 health crisis.
“This week, I will be announcing initiatives under the Government’s July Stimulus package aimed specifically at enabling people to move back into employment. I have been working closely with the officials in my Department and my colleagues in Government on developing a suite of measures that will stimulate the economy and provide supports to businesses.
“A key element of the package will be enhancing the supports available to people who have lost employment during this pandemic to assist them back into work as quickly as possible,” the Minister added.