Britain faces a jobs crisis: we must fight for our jobs, businesses and high streets. All the signs are that more steps will have to be taken to save jobs and protect incomes.
Hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs since the start of the pandemic. But it isn’t too late to save many more. If the government does not do everything possible to protect jobs, the crisis will cause yet more damage to people in all regions and nations of the UK. Britain can’t bounce back if we’re stuck in a jobs crisis. That’s why Labour is vowing to fight for jobs, businesses and communities.
Labour’s five-point jobs package calls for the government to put people first and intervene where it is needed. We will:
1. Fight for jobs: by reforming the furlough scheme so that it supports jobs in the worst-hit sectors and targets aid to struggling industries.
2. Back our businesses: by setting up a £1.7 billion fightback fund to prevent firms going under and save our high streets.
3. Leave no-one behind: by providing additional support to areas forced into local lockdowns, supporting the self-employed and helping those left out of existing schemes.
4. Keep workers safe: by protecting workers’ rights, boosting sick pay, making workplaces safe and giving our NHS and care services the resources to avoid a second wave.
5. Drive job creation: by investing in infrastructure, accelerating progress towards a zero-carbon economy and increasing access to skills and training opportunities.
Labour’s Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds MP said:
“The Chancellor’s refusal to abandon his one-size-fits-all withdrawal of furlough is an historic mistake that risks a python-like squeeze on jobs in the worst-hit sectors. The reward for months of hard work and sacrifice by the British people cannot be a P45.
It’s not too late for the Chancellor to see sense, change course and support the businesses and sectors that need it most. But even if he does, there is still much to do. That’s why Labour is today launching the Jobs Jobs Jobs campaign – to offer concrete, constructive proposals that would protect the economy and people’s livelihoods.
The government should back viable businesses that are still impacted by Coronavirus, support the self-employed and come up with a plan to drive job creation as we emerge from the pandemic. And it must ensure our NHS and care services are fully prepared for a second wave – because we won’t recover from this economic crisis until the government gets a grip on the health crisis.
“The government’s mistakes on the health crisis meant the virus spread further and faster across the UK, resulting in the highest number of deaths in Europe. On top of this, our high streets remain devastated, and communities across the country and the families within them are worried about their financial future.
The UK is currently on course for the worst recession in 300 years, and that recession is likely to be deeper and our recovery likely to be longer as a result of the UK government’s slowness.Taxpayers’ money should be used responsibly to strengthen the UK economy: to invest in industries that most need support and provide an environmentally and economically sustainable future; to invest in public services to protect lives and livelihoods; and to invest in a working test, track and isolate system that gives everyone confidence the virus is under control.”