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Coronavirus: Employment Support

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:30 am on 19th March 2020.

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Photo of Tommy Sheppard Tommy Sheppard Shadow SNP Leader of the House of Commons 10:30 am, 19th March 2020

The very essence of the hospitality industry is to provide social contact. Does the Minister understand the real anger of many in that industry that the Government have given advice to their customers but not to them? If the Government believe premises should close, they should say so, and they should accept the consequences of paying people whose idleness is enforced because of a contribution to a public health emergency. What is so hard to understand is that the system for doing that is staring the Government in the face. It already exists. It is called Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs. That is a system for taking money out of wage packets every month and giving it to the Government; now, it should be put into reverse to put money into the pockets of those employees.