The Workers Union is sending a ‘keep calm and carry on’ message to Boris Johnson, after the government delivered a package of extra measures for working people hit by the Coronavirus pandemic BUT WE NOW NEED A COMPLETE LOCKDOWN.
Last Friday, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak announced that the government would provide business grants to cover 80 percent of staff salaries for those kept on by their employers but unable to work. The extra cash will subsidise wages up to £2,500 a month and is designed to act as an incentive to keep people in jobs until the worst of the crisis has past.
The Workers Union’s economic affairs spokesman, Johnathan Morgan, said: ‘This is an unprecedented intervention in the UK economy, but these are unprecedented times. Not even in the darkest days of World War II were schools, offices and restaurants closed, and yet here we are in 2020 with the shutters down on businesses up and down the country. Nobody knows when the worst of the outbreak will be over, but at least workers know that the majority of their bills will be covered by the state until full-time work resumes again. We think this is a bold and innovative move and we stand foursquare behind it.’
At the moment the money is earmarked for staff on full or part-time contracts, with the situation for freelance and self-employed workers less secure. Johnathan Morgan said: ‘While we welcome the government’s move to supplement salaries for contracted workers, there’s still the very real issue of providing additional help for people in the ‘gig-economy’ or those who run their own businesses. Many of our members fall into this category and they play just as important a role in the country’s prosperity as workers in other sectors. It’s neither right nor fair to leave them to negotiate the benefits system in order to bring in some much needed income. We urge Number 10 to look at this again and give these hard-working people the lifeline they deserve. We are all in this together and together we will stand. Our British bulldog spirit will see us through’
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