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People, businesses impacted by Auckland Covid-19 cluster urged to check income support packages

People and businesses impacted by the need to self-isolate amid the Auckland Covid-19 cluster have been urged to check online for what income support packages are available to them.

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An employee at the restaurant worked a shift there on Monday, when the person should have been isolating, health officials said. Source: 1 NEWS

“If you are required to self-isolate and can’t work from home, I encourage you to check the Work and Income website and talk to your employer about the government support you may be eligible for,” Minister for Social Development and Employment, Carmel Sepuloni, said today in a statement.

It follows the announcement yesterday of a new Covid-19 case in a worker at KFC Botany, bringing the Auckland community cluster to 12.

The Work and Income website provides clear information about what support is available for the various contact categories and locations of interest.

It includes the Covid-19 Short Term Absence Payment, a $350 one-off payment which is available for businesses, including self-employed people, to help pay their workers who cannot work from home while they wait for a Covid-19 test result.

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Businesses can apply for the payment if they have been advised that their worker or a self-employed person is staying home while waiting for a Covid-19 test result; the parent or caregiver of a dependent staying home while waiting on their test result and the dependent requires support to do so safely; or is a household member of secondary contact of someone who is a close contact of a person with Covid-19, and the worker has been advised to stay at home while waiting for the contact's test result.

The Leave Support Scheme, a lump sum covering two weeks for each eligible employee, is also available. The scheme is paid at a flat rate of $1176.60 for people who were working 20 hours or more per week (full-time rate) and $700 for people who were working less than 20 hours per week (part-time rate).

The Auckland Resurgence Support Line, established by the Ministry for Social Development, is also available to offer welfare support for the Papatoetoe community following the emergence of the Auckland community outbreak in the area.

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The latest case worked nine hours at a KFC on Monday when they should have already been isolating. Source: 1 NEWS

It has since been widened to include those being asked to self-isolate following the announcement of two new community cases in staff members at Kmart Botany and KFC Botany.

“We all have a role to play in stamping out Covid from our communities," Sepuloni said.

"That is why MSD will continue to work closely with the Papatoetoe High School community, and reach out to employers in the Auckland area to make sure they’re all aware of the support that is available, and how to access it."