Please Note: All information correct at time of writing on 17 March 2020. We do our very best to make sure our information is as up to date as possible, but we’d encourage you to check out our latest articles and to check the government website for updates as they happen.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak, alongside Prime Minister Boris Johnson, today made a series of announcements largely aimed at providing financial relief for business and to prop up the economy as the spread of COVID-19 continues.
We know that there will shortly be an announcement of employment support measures, that are currently being worked on with unions and various business organisations.
Here, we’ve gathered the most important points for business owners and employers to make a note of as the progress of the virus unfolds.
The financial support from the government will be delivered in two ways:
Both schemes will be up and running from the start of next week. Keep an eye on our website for updates when more details of these schemes are announced.
Further changes announced included:
In the coming days the Chancellor promised that he would go much further to protect people’s financial security and in particular, he would work with trade unions and business groups to develop “new types of employment support to help protect people’s jobs and their incomes through this period.”
During the Q&A following the formal announcement, the point was made that businesses are making decision to end contracts and lay off people now. The Chancellor confirmed that he would urge business to wait for further details of the package to arrive before they made decisions about laying off employees. He offered reassurance that support is on its way, so they don’t have to rush into any decisions.
The Chancellor was asked for more information on what the employment support package would look like. He said it would be a combination of new measures and an extension of existing measures. What they’re trying to achieve is to help businesses meet the fixed costs of employees’ wages without having to resort to dismissals. Whatever they chose to put into action will have to work fast and quickly.
We understand that the spread of coronavirus across the UK is worrying – both for the safety of your people and business.
Our HR, Employment Law and Health & Safety experts are closely monitoring the spread of coronavirus, along with government initiatives and legislation intended to protect people and businesses – and updating our advice regularly.
If you’ve got any questions about the impact of coronavirus on your business, you can visit our Coronavirus Frequently Asked Questions, which is regularly refreshed. And if you’re considering a move to temporary homeworking, you can find our guide right here.
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