AQW 15635/17-22 – COVID-19 special recognition payment

Mr Patsy McGlone (Mid Ulster): To ask the Minister for Communities whether the £500 COVID-19 special recognition payment to Health and Social Care workers will be determined as income for claimants of Universal Credit and other means-tested benefits.

Minister for Communities: I am fully supportive of the payment of COVID-19 related support grants to workers in recognition of the difficulties they have experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic. I am committed to assisting my Ministerial colleagues and encourage early engagement with me and my Department when a COVID-19 support grant is proposed. This enables my officials to consider whether the proposed support grant can be disregarded under current benefit legislation and if not, work to see if a solution is possible, so that the support grant does not have a negative impact on a person’s benefit.