More than 40,000 people in Cork will receive the pandemic unemployment payment (PUP) today.
New figures from the Department of Social Protection show it has issued weekly payments valued at €118.04 million to 398,206 people in receipt of the PUP this week, including 40,485 people in Cork.
The number of people receiving a PUP payment this week nationally represents an increase of 62,607 (18.7%) on the 335,599 people paid last week.
A total of 32,761 people in Cork received the payment last week.
According to the Department, the sector with the highest number of people receiving PUP this week is Accommodation and Food Service activities (106,387). This is followed by Wholesale and Retail Trade (65,300) and Administrative and Support Service Activities (34,459).
The sector that has seen the highest increase in people receiving PUP this week is Wholesale and Retail.
Some 65,300 people working in this sector will receive payment today, compared to 46,853 last week.
This is followed by the construction sector which has seen an increase in PUP recipients from 23,080 last week compared to 32,151 this week. The number of people in this sector in receipt of PUP is expected to increase further next week following the imposing of restrictions that took effect last Friday evening.
These figures are in addition to the 189,860 people who were reported on the Live Register as of the end of December.
Commenting on the latest figures, Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys said: “This week’s figures show that just short of 400,000 are now in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment.
“These statistics outline the stark impact the Covid-19 Pandemic continues to have on the Labour Market.
“The decisions taken by the Government to impose increased restrictions on sectors such as construction, retail and education were not taken lightly.
“But these decisions are necessary in order to protect lives, livelihoods and our frontline workers.
Minister Humphreys continued: “PUP remains available to anyone who is eligible. I want to remind people again that the quickest and easiest way to apply is via www.mywelfare.ie."
Meanwhile, new figures show that the number of people medically certified to receive Covid-19 Enhanced Illness Benefit has increased in every county since last week.
Since last March, some 105,372 people under the age of 66 have been medically certified for receipt of the Covid-19 Enhanced Illness Benefit.
Of these, 11.5% have been diagnosed with Covid-19 while the remainder have been required to medically self-isolate.
7,308 of these people were first medically certified last month and of these 1,629 have been certified with having the Covid-19 virus.
The two sectors with the highest number of employees medically certified to receive this payment are Wholesale and Retail (22,642) and Human Health and Social Work Activities (18,595).