On Tuesday of this week, Rishi Sunak, Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced that the Job Retention Scheme will be extended to the end of October, with employers given the freedom to furlough staff on a part-time basis from August.
Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) National Chairman Mike Cherry said: “Extending the Job Retention Scheme (JRS) and allowing small firms to furlough staff on a part-time basis will protect thousands of livelihoods over the months ahead. Our members have been telling us loud and clear that the ability to furlough staff on a part-time basis will be central to aiding gradual recovery at a time when economic activity is still in the doldrums.
“We await further detail on the contributions that will be required of small employers after July. We need to ensure that those obligations are affordable for the many businesses that have had no revenue coming in for months now, but still have fixed overheads to worry about.
“Our five million-strong self-employed community is also seeking reassurances about the measures that will be taken to avoid a cliff edge moment where income support is concerned. Many have benefited from the hugely ambitious income support scheme that was established for them – some have not – but they will all need additional help from this government over the coming months. Policymakers may have to look very closely at additional hardship funds for those that are currently falling through the gaps.”