Caroline Welcomes Chancellors Unprecedented Covid-19 Recovery Package

Today, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has announced an unique and unprecedented package of measures to support Britain’s economic recovery and protect jobs. The package of measures today is aimed to help Britain bounce back following the Covid-19 pandemic.

The measures recognise that those hardest hit by a recession are young people, who usually work in sectors that have been disproportionately hit. The ‘Plan for Jobs’ includes a landmark £2 billion Kickstart Scheme that will provide Government-subsidised jobs as the Treasury will fund 25 hours’ week of work at minimum wage for 16 to 24 year olds.

It will also invest £111 million into tripling the scale of traineeships, creating 30 000 more places, and help people get the access to job support and advice they need. An extra £32 million will be given to the National Careers Service and £1billion of the Department of Work and Pensions. Sector-based academy placements this year and next will also see a £17 million funding boost.

Apprenticeships provide a fantastic route for local young residents to spring-board into employment, such as at through the awarding winning CEMAST and CTECH programmes. Businesses who now employ an apprentice under the age of 25 will be given a £2000 bonus and £1500 for apprentices over 25, providing a massive incentive to hire those leaving their training.

The announcements have already been supported by the CBI as a “much-needed down payment in young people’s futures”.

Since March, over £160 billion has been invested into measures such as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, to protect jobs, incomes and businesses. 9.4 million workers have been put on furlough, including 9800 people in the Gosport Constituency. As part of the package, every employer that brings a member of staff back working until January, will get a £1000 Job Retention Bonus per employee. Meaning, if all Gosport residents on furlough were brought back, £9.8 million could go directly to local businesses.    

Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, commented:

“Young people bear the brunt of most economic crises, but they are at particular risk this time because they work in sectors disproportionately hit up the pandemic.

“We also know that youth unemployment has a long-term impact on jobs and wages and we don’t want to see this happen to this generation.

“So we’ve got a bold plan to protect, support and create jobs – a Plan for Jobs.”

Today’s announcement not only focused on ‘jobs, jobs, jobs’ but also green investment as £3 billion has been put towards green home improvements, decarbonising buildings and kickstarting an eco-friendly economic recovery. Local MP, Caroline Dinenage, who meet with constituents virtually over Zoom for the Time Is Now lobby, is well aware of how central the environment is to constituents concerns and has welcomed the announcement. These measures alone will see 650 000 homes become more energy efficient and help people save an average £300 annually.

As venues and businesses start to reopen their doors from this month, it is clear that the challenge is far from over as the full financial ramifications of the pandemic become apparent. Caroline has herself organised a local Virtual Roundtable and Digital Marketing for July 17th with Google. The event is aimed for businesses who want to share the challenges that they are facing, resources and take part in a session on Digital Marketing Strategy with Google Digital Garage.

None have been hardest hit by those in the hospitality industry. While Caroline promoted local, independent businesses who adapted their takeaway services at the beginning of the pandemic, many continued to struggle throughout. So the Chancellor has announced a further VAT cut from 20%, to 5%.

Importantly, for both businesses and residents, in August the ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ Scheme will mean the Treasury will pay 50% of your bill, up to £10 per head, Monday to Wednesdays, in participating retailers. Businesses can register from next Monday and the money claimed will be back in their bank account within 5 working days. Caroline will be asking businesses who are taking part to contact her if they want their services promoting on her platforms, to help residents know where they can wine and dine during the week and promote local pubs, restaurants, bars and cafes.

Caroline commented:

“I am blown away by today’s announcements.

“The Chancellor has really pulled through to protect local jobs and businesses as we face the aftermath of closures. These measures will bring real, tangible benefits for Gosport, Hill Head, Stubbington and Lee-on-the-Solent.

“From apprenticeships opportunities, to helping our young people get jobs & getting our locals back on their feet, I think these measures have really focused on the areas that are in most need of help.

“These measures are not just here for the short term, but to help us get back on our feet, recover, rebuild and help hard working families protect their income.”