Second lockdown will cost 1.2 billion in social welfare payments

 

The second lockdown is going to cost the state around 1.2 billion euro in increased social welfare payments alone.

There's been a restoration of the higher, 350 euro a week rate of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment for those who earned more than 400 a week before losing their jobs.

Six weeks of level five restrictions will kick in from midnight Wednesday night with the likely loss of 150,000 jobs.

People will be told to stay at home and only venture beyond 5km from their homes in limited circumstances.

All non-essential retail is to close, with schools, creches and construction sites remaining open.

At the announcement last night Tánaiste Leo Varadkar defended not moving to level five two weeks ago, when he was highly critical of NPHET: