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The Social Democrats have repeated their calls for the introduction of a wage subsidy during the current Covid-19 crisis. The party says that such a move is vital in order to keep people connected to employment, maintain reasonable incomes and keep businesses afloat.

The party’s finance spokesperson, co-leader Róisín Shortall said:

“The scale of job losses we are seeing and at the pace we are seeing them means that overnight thousands of households have found themselves in dire financial circumstances.  People are already extremely anxious about the threat to our collective health and the added anxiety of financial hardship is quite simply an unacceptable burden to place on people at this time of national and international crisis.

“Other European countries have recognised the need to step up and ensure workers and the self-employed have their incomes protected.  It is common sense to recognise that not only does this benefit the immediate employee but the follow-on benefits for society are immeasurable. We’re talking about supporting people to avoid becoming impoverished, to put food on the table, keep their homes heated and lit whilst keeping people involved in the workforce and also maintaining a level of consumer demand. If we, as a society, are not subsidising people to do these things then we are adding to what is already a crisis of unimaginable scale for both our society and economy.”


21st March 2020


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