A Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment announced this week by the Irish government at present doesn't apply to people living north of the border who work in the south, as the criteria stage that to qualify you must "Live in the Republic of Ireland"

Newry and Armagh MLA Cathal Boylan claims that many cross-border workers living in the Newry/ Armagh area have been left in limbo due to regulations governing the Irish Government’s Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment.

The MLA confirmed that  Sinn Féin  are seeking urgent clarification from the Taoiseach and are actively lobbying for this payment to be extended to cross-border workers living north of the border.

Speaking yesterday Mr Boylan said “The Irish Government’s Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment (€350 weekly) is a positive measure for those who have been forced out of work as a result of the ongoing pandemic crisis.

"However, I’m concerned that currently this payment is only available to people living in the south of Ireland.

"There are many workers living north of the border who are employed in the south and they shouldn’t be excluded from this scheme.

"The exclusion of workers living in the north is just adding to the distress and anxiety that many workers are feeling at this time."

Concluding he stated “Sinn Féin has been actively lobbying on behalf of cross border workers. My colleague John Brady TD met with Minister Regina Doherty yesterday to discuss this issue and Sinn Féin raised it again today with the Taoiseach. I understand that the Government will be clarifying this matter soon and I’m hoping that common sense will prevail."

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