The Workers Union has urged Rishi Sunak to empower workers with a ‘budget for working people.’
The announcement comes ahead of the chancellor’s budget, which is due to begin at 12.30pm today.
Mr Sunak is expected to reveal plans to extend support for working people through the furlough scheme. In practical terms this will see the current arrangements remain in place until the end of September.
However, employers will be asked to subsidise 10 percent of staff salaries from July, with an increase to 20 percent in August and September.
In a bid to appease campaigners and those on low incomes, the chancellor is also rumoured to be considering maintaining the current £20 boost to Universal Credit for another six months.
The Workers Union on Delivering a Budget for Working People
If the stories flying out of the rumour mill have any credence, then the chancellor’s budget looks set fair to provide working people with some basic assurances. Extending furlough is the minimum we should expect, and in all likelihood the government will go further and offer a mixed package of measures that includes additional support for business and low-tax incentives for struggling parts of the UK.
But this is not the time for complacency. If the chancellor thinks that these measures alone will reverse the damage done to working people’s livelihoods, then the hard truths will be as prolonged as they are unpalatable. As well as hatching plans to preserve the status quo, we need to see a detailed breakdown of his recovery plan. That means grappling with prickly issues such as ensuring online retail giants play their fair share of tax. It means investment in skills, training and jobs in industries liable to flourish after the pandemic. It means making sure that the “opportunity economy” isn’t just a euphemism for poor quality, low-paid and insecure work.
None of these points can be ignored as we ride the rocky road to recovery. But one thing is for sure Mr Sunak: working people will be at the heart of getting this country back on its feet, and you ignore them at your peril.
The Workers Union – fighting for social justice, fighting for you