Posted: 31 July, 2020 at 2:24 pm
New analysis shows the high street is still under strain in Yorkshire as 711,700 furloughed workers start losing support in a matter of hours.
Analysis released today by the Labour Party shows:
It also shows many businesses in South Yorkshire still face significant challenges due to coronavirus.
Google mobility data shows that footfall for retail and recreation businesses, including restaurants, cafes, museums and cinemas, is down 40% in South Yorkshire compared to pre-pandemic levels. Footfall on public transport and around workplaces is still down 32% and 13% respectively.
Meanwhile, the latest ONS data shows some firms have still not reopened, whilst a large number of those that have report lower turnover.
A fifth of businesses in the food and accommodation sector have still not been able to reopen, including nearly 30% of SMEs. 43% of businesses in the arts, entertainment and recreation sector are also still temporarily closed, including nearly half of SMEs.
Meanwhile, of those that have opened, 84% in food and accommodation and 72% in arts and entertainment report reduced turnover from pre-pandemic levels.
In under 24 hours, these firms begin losing support from the Job Retention Scheme and will have to start meeting some of the cost of non-working hours for any retained employees (either fully or partially furloughed).
This change risks handing furloughed workers in Yorkshire and the Humber a P45;
Labour is calling on the government to reverse course and extend the furlough scheme so that it supports jobs in the worst-hit sectors and targets aid to struggling industries.
This would put the UK in line with other major developed democracies, with many extending their versions of the Job Retention Scheme or similar wage subsidy schemes.