2 April 2020
By Bryan Smyth
Sinn Féin TD Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire has said that it is grossly unfair and discriminatory that people over age 66 do not qualify for the COVID Emergency Payment.
“I have been contacted by many people in recent days who are 66 years of age and older, who were working until they lost their jobs due to the COVID 19 public health crisis.”
“Like everyone else, they have lost their income.”
“However unlike anyone else, they do not qualify for the COVID 19 emergency payment, and have been left facing hardship due to this.”
“My office has been contacted by numerous people who were deeply concerned and do not know where next weeks money is coming from.”
“The COVID 19 payment is meant to be a quick injection of money in to peoples pockets, at a time that people are facing a very sudden drop in income, and a time when the system is under huge pressure.”
“There is no logical reason to exclude people on the basis of age. I have also been contacted by apprentices under 18 who do not qualify who have also lost their income. Age caps should not be in place on such an emergency payment such as this.
“I am calling on the Minister to remove any age restriction, and to pay the payment to anyone who has lost their jobs in recent weeks.”