Sinn Féin MLA Caoimhe Archibald has welcomed confirmation from the Finance Minister that NICS officials are working with HMRC to resolve an identification issue with the self-employed income support scheme.
The party’s economy spokesperson said:
“I welcome confirmation from the Finance Minister Conor Murphy today that NICS officials are working with HMRC to seek to fix the identification issue surrounding access to self-employed income support scheme.
“It is disappointing that neither an Irish passport nor a local driving licence can be used at this point as the Good Friday Agreement commits to rigorous impartiality and enables citizens in the north to hold either a Irish or British passport or both.
“I have been contacted by many concerned self-employed workers across the north who have had to wait several weeks for applications for this scheme to open but they are still not able to use the HMRC online application.
“While HMRC has indicated that a helpline also exists for those who have difficulty in accessing the scheme online and applications can be made by telephone, myself and other elected reps have received feedback that this is not working for everyone who is trying to use this option.
“I also welcome the Minister’s commitment to monitor the situation to ensure that citizens in the north are not disadvantaged when accessing this scheme. It is vital that HMRC resolve this issue immediately.”