The Chancellor has unveiled increased support for jobs and workers hit by Covid restrictions after growing concerns from firms in tier two areas.
Rishi Sunak announced changes to the Job Support Scheme (JSS) – set to replace furlough in November.
Sunak told the Commons that he understood businesses that were able to stay open were still facing ‘profound economic uncertainty’.
Under the revised scheme, employers will pay less and staff can work fewer hours before they qualify. Furthermore, the taxpayer subsidy has been doubled. While it is good news that more support will be given to businesses, the early years sector has once again been left out. Despite the struggles providers are facing, the scheme does not offer any specific support to nurseries across the country.
Comparing the scheme
Across all of the schemes below, the employer has to NI and minimum pension contributions
Original Furlough Scheme (finishing at the end of Oct)
- Employer pays 20%
- Government pays 60%
Job Support Scheme (Tier Three impact)
- Government pays 67%
Job Support Scheme part-time (impacting all businesses under restrictions)
- Employer pays 4%
- Government pays 49%
- The employees must work at least 20%
Purnima Tanuku OBE, chief executive of NDNA said: ‘When the Job Security Scheme was announced it was clear that it was less generous than existing furlough arrangements and so would provide limited support to employers. Boosting that support can only help protect jobs across the sector.
‘It’s clear the hospitality and retail sectors need support but it’s disappointing that there is still no specific financial support for nurseries – which are an essential part of our economic recovery in enabling parents to work.
‘Nurseries and childcare providers have worked hard to give children positive and engaging learning environments at a hugely challenging time. They are facing the double whammy of higher operating costs, due to safety measures they have put in place, and reduced income.
‘The Government should recognise this and make support funding available. NDNA will be writing to all local authorities to encourage them to use their top-up funding to assist childcare businesses and thereby ensure there are sufficient early education places for young children.’