First Spend Local Cards Issued Today
Economy Minister Gordon Lyons has announced that the first 100,000 Spend Local cards will be issued today (October 4).
The first 100,000 Spend Local cards are issued today.
The minister said: “Today marks the next important step in the deployment of the High Street Scheme, as the first 100,000 applicants are ready to receive their Spend Local card.
“I am delighted that the prepaid card issuance process is now well underway and that early applicants will soon be able to use their cards to support their local retail, hospitality and service businesses. This will give them the timely boost they need to help them come out of the economic shock caused by the pandemic.
“Since the portal opened last week, demand for the Spend Local card is unprecedented.
“I encourage those who have not yet requested their Spend Local card to do so now on NI Direct.”
When an applicant receives their card, they will need to verify the card through a computerized phone system or text message and make the first payment using a personal identification number (PIN), before they can begin payment. use for contactless payments.
The aim of the High Street Scheme is to support local businesses in Northern Ireland affected by the drop in footfall due to the pandemic.
The Minister concluded: “As Spend Local cards start to hit homes across Northern Ireland, my message to everyone who receives theirs is ‘spend local’. Please use your card to support your local stores, hospitality and other services that have been most affected by the Covid-19 restrictions. “
Notes to Editors:
1. Caption: Minister of the Economy Gordon Lyons.
2. Applicants can register for the Shop Local card on the nidirect website.
3. The key dates for the deployment of the High Street Scheme
- September 27 to October 25 – The application portal will be open.
- Week starting October 4 – The first installment of cards will be issued to those who have successfully applied for the Spend Local Prepaid Card.
- October 11 – Opening of the telephone service to take charge of applications from people who cannot access or use the online portal.
- October 25 – The High Street Scheme online portal and telephone services closed.
- October 25 – the last qualifying date for those reaching the age of 18 to be able to apply for a Spend Local card.
- November 30 – High Street Scheme closes and Spend Local prepaid cards will cease to be valid.
4. From September 27 to October 25, applicants can apply for the Spend Local card through the NI Direct portal.
5. For verification purposes to reduce the risk of fraud and error, each applicant will be asked to provide:
- disability status;
- national insurance number;
- E-mail adress; and
- phone number.
6. Applicants will also have the option of including a driver’s license number to enable verification. Once the applicant has completed the registration process, their information will be checked against a number of government databases to verify their identity.
7. The Ministry is required under section 75 to monitor the implementation of its policies, which includes collecting data on age, gender and disability.
8. When an applicant receives their card, they will need to verify the card via a computerized phone system or text message and make the first payment using a PIN code, before they can start using it for payments. without contact.
9. Cards can be used at all participating businesses in Northern Ireland. They cannot be used online or for gambling or certain financial and legal services.
10. The helpline will open on October 11th. The later opening of the phone service was implemented to encourage more people to apply online when the portal opens on September 27 and to avoid using the phone line by leaving it available for those who have not. cannot access or cannot use the internet.
11. The High Street Scheme Spend Local Prepaid Card may be accepted by stores and businesses that may accept credit and debit cards for payment. It cannot be used to purchase goods or services online.
12. The Department’s Economic Recovery Action Plan is available on the Department’s website.
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15. For media inquiries, contact the press office of the Department of Economics at [email protected]
16. The Executive Information Service operates an after-hours service. for media inquiries only between 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. Monday to Friday and weekends and holidays. The permanent press attaché can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.
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