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Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: Public Sector

Treasury written question – answered on 13th May 2020.

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Photo of Bridget Phillipson Bridget Phillipson Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether public sector organisations are able to furlough former employees who left their employment or after 28 February 2020 and who are unable to commence employment with their new employer due to the covid-19 oubreak.

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

If an individual was made redundant or stopped working for their employer after 28 February, the employer can agree to re-employ that individual and place them on furlough.

In line with the private sector, public sector employers can re-employ an eligible individual, furlough them and access the CJRS, on condition that the individual is not already on furlough from another organisation; there are no options for the individual to be re-employed and redeployed elsewhere in the public sector; and the organisation has already met the eligibility criteria for publicly funded bodies to furlough staff.

The eligibility criteria for publicly funded bodies to furlough staff are that the organisation has experienced a reduction in funding (in the form of commercial revenue or public grants) due to the economic disruption of COVID-19; the organisation has exhausted all reasonable options for redeployment across the public sector; and the employee considered for furloughing would otherwise be made redundant.

The employer is under no obligation to re-employ and furlough staff.

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