Job Retention Scheme Comment from Liverpool Chamber CEO

Tue, May 12th, 2020

Paul Cherpeau, Chief Executive of Liverpool Chamber of Commerce:

The government’s extension to the Job Retention Scheme to October is an important and necessary component of our economic recovery.

Many businesses have used the job retention scheme to provide a necessary lifeline to avoid redundancies and layoffs.

As the government attempts to move the country into a phase of economic recovery, the adaptation and flexibility of this scheme is imperative to ensure businesses and employees can sustain jobs amidst an incremental uplift of economic activity. A flick of the switch is unworkable and would merely trigger a wave of redundancies.

Today’s announcement that from August the job retention scheme benefits will be tapered and employees can receive a top up of wages for returning on a part time basis is a sound principle

Maintaining flexibility in the scheme is of vital importance to cater for challenges faced by specific industries and businesses as capacity and activity is gradually built upon over the coming period. Such an approach will maximise survival chances and minimise large scale job losses.

The ongoing partnership between government, business and people remains imperative to a successful restart of the economy. The adaptable and flexible approach to the job retention scheme, together with an emphasis on a health and safety conscious reopening of businesses offers a positive - though tentative - way forward through this crisis.

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