What the government’s jobs protection scheme will mean for you

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Chancellor Rishi Sunak has unveiled his multi-billion pound “winter economy plan” which he hopes will save future job losses due to the coronavirus pandemic.

This comes after the government announced new coronavirus restrictions which will hit the hospitality sector hard.

This includes a curfew, where pubs, bars and restaurants have to close at 10pm.

After the furlough scheme ends on October 31, a new “winter jobs scheme” will take over.

The newest measure is aimed at protecting millions of jobs in the sectors hit hardest by the most recent Covid-19 guidance.

But what does that mean for you?

The government’s furlough scheme will still finish as planned on October 31, but there are other measures in place to keep people in work.

It means that if your job has been directly affected by the coronavirus pandemic, your job may be able to keep you on, even after the furlough scheme has ended.

One of the biggest wins for employees is that the government will help pay for wages in certain situations.

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Mr Sunak said the government would ”directly support" the wages of people in viable jobs working at least a third of their normal hours.

The government will pay for two thirds of the salary of workers’ where businesses have had to cut their hours because of the Covid-19 crisis.

This will give businesses the option of keeping people in work on shorter hours.

That means a business can choose to keep you on for shorter hours, and the government will top up the remaining two thirds of their normal wage.

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In addition, the grant scheme for self-employed workers will be extended.

Bounce back loans have given more than one million small businesses a £38 billion boost to survive.

Now Pay as you Grow loans will be introduced to give these firms more time to repay the loans, up to 10 years.

Businesses that are struggling can apply for interest-only loans.

He explained: "Businesses who are struggling can now choose to make interest-only payments and anyone in real trouble can apply to suspend repayments all together for up to six months.”

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He said he will extend the deadline of all the Government's loan schemes until the end of the year, adding: "We are starting work on a new successor loan guarantee programme, set to begin in January."

For the hospitality and tourism sector, Mr Sunak said he would keep VAT at 5%, instead of the planned increase to 20%.

He said: “So to support more than 150,000 businesses and help protect 2.4 million jobs through the winter, I'm announcing today that we are cancelling the planned increase and will keep the lower 5% VAT rate until March 31 next year.”

  • Coronavirus

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