IRELAND - Pensioners on social welfare payments will receive a Christmas bonus for a sixth year in a row from minister for social affairs, Seamus Brennan (pictured) after he revealed plans to double payments.
Pensioners on the retirement pension, old age contributory/non-contributory pension, invalidity pension and widow/widower’s pension will qualify for the festive bonus, equivalent to 100% of the normal weekly payments
The total cost of the pay out, which also benefits other welfare claimants, is estimated to be just over e139m.
With possible industrial action on the cards, Brennan has been in urgent talks with officials to ensure recipients who receive payments by post (approximately 167,000) will receive them on time.
Brennan said: “Any disruption to the payment pattern would cause serious problems for a great many people. In the event of their not being a postal service, my direct concern is to ensure that welfare customers still get their payments.
“Contingency plans were reviewed and updated so as to ensure that alternative arrangements are in place to cover all possible situations. I and my officials will be closely monitoring over the coming weeks.”
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