Suzanne Webb, Member of Parliament for Stourbridge, has welcomed the “bold and decisive” plan set out by the Chancellor to save many jobs in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking in Parliament on Wednesday, Suzanne reiterated that her number one priority for the area was “jobs, jobs, jobs”, protecting people from the economic impact of coronavirus which will “not discriminate” in cutting across all parts of society.
Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, the Government has said it will do whatever it takes to protect people and businesses from the immediate economic crisis. As part of this, more than 11,400 jobs have been supported through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, allowing employers to put workers on furlough while the Government supports their wages, in Stourbridge.
The Chancellor has now unveiled the next phase od the Government’s response focussing on jobs: supporting people to find the jobs that are out there, creating new jobs through investing in infrastructure, and protecting jobs by revitalising the hard-hit sectors upon which many jobs depend.
As part of this, employers will be encouraged to retain staff who have been on the furlough scheme, with the Government paying a one-off bonus of £1,000 for every employee who was furloughed and who is kept on until January, as well as measures designed to tackle youth unemployment.
Specifically welcoming the Kickstart Scheme, which will create hundreds of thousands of new, fully subsidised jobs for young people across the country, Suzanne said “As a youth in the early ’80s, I saw the impact of unemployment on young people. That, combined with my strong belief in the nobility of work, means that I am over the moon about the Chancellor’s kickstart scheme, which will give 16 to 24-year-old youths the best possible chance.”
Also included in the Government’s £30 billion Plan for Jobs:
- A temporary cut in VAT for the tourism and hospitality sectors, to give a much-needed boost to some of the industries hardest hit by coronavirus.
- A new Eat Out to Help Out Scheme, giving people up to 50 per cent off meals out at restaurants, pubs and cafes on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays in August.
- The temporary removal of stamp duty on all homes under £500,000 until the end of March 2021, to catalyse the housing market.
Suzanne also called on the Government to progress the work being done to enable nail and beauty salons to open once again. Following visits to businesses over the weekend she said “I make an unabashed plug to get nail bars and beauty salons open. They are often run by people who have been on traineeships themselves and who now run their own businesses, proving that traineeships work—they are capitalists at their finest and of the future. Please, let us get them open.”
You can view Suzanne's full speech here.