Minister of State Kevin Humphreys welcomes Social Welfare Budget Package 2016


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Budget 2016 will support People Back into Work

Minister of State Kevin Humphreys welcomes Social Welfare Budget Package 

  • Family Income Supplement threshold changes will support 60,000 families.
  • Increase of €2.50 per week in top up payment for over 43,000 people on Activation Schemes.
  • Earnings disregard for Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment paid to lone parents will increase from €60 to €90 per week.
  • Class A PRSI credit for employees earning between €352.01 and €424 will benefit over 88,000. 

Kevin Humphreys, T.D., Minister of State for Employment, Community and Social Support at the Department of Social Protection welcomed today’s Budget, saying that it is one which is helping people back into work, is designed to ensure work pays, and ensure low and middle income earners benefit from the recovery.

There is a range of measures in Budget 2016 that will make a positive difference for many who return to work.  The Family Income Supplement threshold will increase by €5 for families with one child and €10 for those with two or more children from January.  This payment is an in-work support for families on low earnings.  The measure will benefit almost 60,000 families in respect of over 131,000 children.  “From January this measure will help to ensure that employees with dependent children, earning the minimum wage will benefit from getting a FIS payment”.

The earnings disregard for Jobseeker’s Transitional Payment paid to lone parents will increase from €60 to €90 per week for existing and new recipients. In addition, all earnings above €90 will be assessed at 50% instead of 60%. This payment gives lone parent customers the flexibility to balance their work and caring responsibilities while also supporting them to move towards sustainable employment as their children get older.  Some 5,900 lone parents and their children will benefit.

A number of top-up payments are paid for those on Community Employment (CE), Tús, Rural Social Scheme, Gateway and JobBridge employment schemes.  Jobseekers who avail of these schemes are working with organisations providing services in the community, voluntary sectors and SMEs.  Participants of these schemes will receive a top-up payment of €2.50 per week from January.  In 2016 this will benefit 43,000 people across these five activation schemes.

Minister Humphreys said: “Great progress has been made in reducing the long term unemployment rate and supporting those out of work back into a job. The top-up payments will provide a further incentive for people to get back into work and will ensure that participants on these schemes will not lose out when the minimum wage increases next year.  These participants will also benefit from the Christmas Bonus that is restored to 75% of their weekly payment this year. It will be paid in early December.”

For many people, especially those out of work for some time, these schemes provide an opportunity to learn new skills, explore opportunities and regain the confidence and routine of a job. Across the country thousands are benefiting from working in their community and exploring new pathways into work.

Minister Humphreys also welcomed a new tapered PRSI Credit that is being introduced for employees insured at Class A whose earnings are between €352.01 and €424 in a week.  In addition, the lower 8.5% Class A rate of employer PRSI will apply to weekly earnings up to €376 (up from €356).  “The two of these PRSI measures will make a significant impact for many.  The new tapered Credit will reduce the weekly PRSI bill for over 88,000 employees while the increase in the earnings level for the lower Class A rate will benefit some 26,000 employers.”

The Minister concluded: “This Budget is fair and one which reflects an economy that is out of recession.  It will help drive our economy, create more employment and thereby provide better opportunities for all citizens living here.”

ENDS

Last modified:13/10/2015
 

 Budget 2016