Government announces new six-month Jobs Support Scheme as furlough ends

The new top-up scheme, covering up to two-thirds of wages, was announced by Chancellor Rishi Sunak today (September 24)

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced details of the government’s new Winter Economy Plan.

In his speech, Sunak announced that the furlough scheme, which ends at the end of October, will be replaced by a new Jobs Support Scheme, set to begin on November 1.

The new scheme will see the government top up the wages of workers for the next six months, covering up to two thirds of their pay packet. Workers will have to work at least a third of their usual hours to qualify for the scheme, Sunak said. Full details can be found below.

Advertisement

The government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme is also set to be extended, covering 20% of average monthly income for the self-employed, down from the current 70%.

So far, there has been no additional support announced for the live music industry in the Winter Economy Plan. Earlier today, ahead of Sunak’s press conference, members of the music industry urged the Chancellor to give support to help them through the coronavirus crisis.

The Featured Artists Coalition said: “It’s crucial that @RishiSunak’s statement tomorrow supports live music. 210,000 people rely on clubs, gigs & festivals for employment, but we’ll be one of the last sectors to open. The UK’s live music industry is world-beating. Without support, it won’t survive.”

New research from the Musicians’ Union states that over a third of musicians are considering abandoning the industry due to losses made during the pandemic, while nearly half of its members already being forced to seek alternative work, and 70% currently doing less than a quarter of their regular work.

Advertisement

New lockdown restrictions were imposed in England by Prime Minister Boris Johnson this week, including a 10pm curfew on pubs. Johnson said the new restrictions could be in place for the next six months.

Advertisement
Advertisement