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Patricia Gibson MP has urged the Chancellor to amend the Jobs Retention Scheme (JRS) to ensure anyone who started or was due to start a job in March receives support, including seasonal workers.

Currently, an employer cannot access support for an employee taken on after 28th February. This excludes most seasonal workers in tourism and hospitality, who usually start in March for the spring and summer seasons.

Scottish National Party (SNP) MPs have written to Rishi Sunak urging him to immediately update the JRS to ensure workers employed from 28th February qualify for support.

Patricia Gibson MP said:

“I welcome the JRS and other measures the UK Government has brought in at this difficult time across the reserved areas for which they are responsible. However, there are still huge numbers of people impacted financially by the crisis who are not receiving support.

“The JRS fails to recognise geographical and sectoral differences across Scotland and risks leaving tens of thousands of workers across rural and island Scotland ineligible for help.

“An otherwise good scheme to reduce unemployment will see many facing unnecessary hardship.

“Seasonal workers in hospitality and tourism in particular, now face the prospect of being left with Universal Credit as their only means of support.

“I urge the Chancellor to ensure people with an employment history of being seasonal workers and those who were due to begin work in March are considered to be employees for the purposes of the Job Retention Scheme.”

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