THOUSANDS of Irish people receiving a Job Seeker payment will have to claim it again at post offices once Covid-19 restrictions are eased.
It happened because recipients previously had the option to be paid directly to a bank account when public health measures were first introduced in 2020.
The Department of Social Protection announced today that the return to post offices is due to Ireland remove most of the restrictions of Covid-19 last week.
And the ministry noted that the move will also help post offices by bringing in more visitors, as well as helping to tackle welfare fraud.
The initial changes will only apply to all new applicants of the job seeker payment.
But it will also be extended to other recipients in the coming months.
The department said today that the payment is sent directly to the recipient’s account as a “special measure” to reduce the spread of the virus. Covid-19and to make sure everyone can follow the guidelines around social distancing.
But after consulting with Arrangements and Ireland Postmaster’s Union, have decided that payments should now return to the post office.
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“I am acutely aware of the challenges facing the Postal Service network,” she said.
“That’s why I’m pleased to announce the return of jobseeker payments to post offices, reflecting arrangements made prior to the Pandemic.
“This is a measure I know the Irish Postal Union and An Post have called for. Our post offices provide essential services to communities the length and breadth of the country.”
The Minister added: “Even during the duration of the Pandemic, our postal workers, postal workers and postal workers have withdrawn all stops to accommodate customer demand. .
“I believe this is the right approach to support the postal network and help reduce welfare fraud.”
And Good Gael TD notes that post offices in rural Ireland need support at this time.
She said: “I am also aware that as Minister for Rural and Community Development, we need to do all we can to support our post offices in Rural Ireland, in keeping with our commitments. in the Government’s rural development policy ‘Our Rural Future’.
“His measure will increase the visibility of our post offices in communities across the country – sending a clear signal of the Government’s commitment to supporting the entire network.”
‘BACK TO NORMAL’
Meanwhile, An Post CEO Debbie Ryan welcomed the move and said it would bring a “welcome back to normal” for both postmen and postal customers.
“One Post Office welcomes this announcement that puts the post office back at the heart of the Jobseeker payments system,” said Ryan.
“This is a perfect example of the practical benefits of using the postal network in delivering Government services to local communities. It also brings a return to normalcy for Post Offices. and post office customers.
“We look forward to the publication of the Inter-Ministerial Working Group and working with the Government to maximize the use of the network to benefit the customers and communities we serve.”
And Minister Humphreys noted that the Department of Social Protection will continue to support the Postal Network through the Inter-Department Group established by Secretary Hildegarde Naughton.
“While the responsibility for An Post is beyond that of the Social Protection Department, I can assure you that my Bureau is committed to participating when consistent with any recommendations made by the Department of Social Security,” she said. The task force is responsible for supporting the entire proposed network.”
https://www.thesun.ie/money/8267255/major-switch-thousands-social-welfare-post-offices-covid-restrictions/ Big change as thousands of Irish jobseekers benefit payments have to claim at post office after Covid-19 rules are relaxed