Patricia Gibson MP has expressed concerns that the UK government is considering winding down furlough and other schemes when it needs to both strengthen them and address serious gaps in support for individuals, businesses and the economy.
UK Chancellor at HM Treasury, Rishi Sunak MP plans to wind down the coronavirus job retention scheme and England’s Health Secretary Matt Hancock MP said the UK Government must “wean off” struggling businesses from the scheme.
Commenting, Mrs Gibson said:
“Rather than winding down the furlough scheme, the Chancellor must strengthen it and address gaps in support, so no one is left behind or pushed further into hardship.
“People and businesses have been hit hard by this pandemic and many face an uncertain financial future. For Mr Hancock to talk about weaning off struggling businesses is deeply worrying.
"HMRC has revealed that over 800,000 companies employing over 6 million people have applied to use the furlough scheme. It is therefore vital that the UK government does not act prematurely to wind it down.
“The Scottish National Party (SNP) has been clear from the start of the crisis that the UK Government must go further in its support, including introducing a comprehensive financial package, with additional support for businesses and self-employed people, not least by bringing forward a guaranteed minimum income and strengthening welfare protections.”