Construction: Coronavirus

Treasury written question – answered on 31st March 2020.

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Photo of Alexander Stafford Alexander Stafford Conservative, Rother Valley

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to support construction workers during the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Jesse Norman Jesse Norman The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

The Chancellor has announced a range of measures to support the economy, including more than £330 billion of loans and guarantees to help firms continue operating.

Many of these measures will benefit the construction sector and construction workers affected by Covid-19. Crucially, in a sector in which many are contractors and self-employed, the range of measures available includes the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, self-assessment payments deferred until 2021 and the self-employed being able to access, in full, Universal Credit at the same rate as Statutory Sick Pay for employees.

The Government is clear that construction activity should continue where it can take place in line with public health advice. To support this, the Construction Leadership Council has published guidance for on-site construction. Construction sites should ensure they are following this guidance, as well as Health and Safety rules and other established safety procedures. The Government expects employers and site managers to be proactive and responsible in implementing guidance and communicating the importance of social distancing and other key measures to workers on site.

The Government is in close contact with the construction industry to understand the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, and will provide further guidance and updates as required.

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