Many of these employees will have already returned to work. Across the whole of the UK and all ages, the number of employments furloughed has decreased from a peak of 8.9 million on 8 May to about 4.8 million on 31 July.
The Government is adapting its response to the changing context, and today the Government has published its Winter Economy Plan, a targeted package of measures to support jobs and business through the winter months. As part of that Plan, the Job Support Scheme will support viable businesses who are facing lower demand due to COVID-19 to keep their employees in work and attached to the workforce. This is in addition to the targeted Plan for Jobs, which includes a Job Retention Bonus to encourage firms to keep on furloughed workers, £1.2 billion to expand and enhance work search support, additional support to people to build the skills they need to get into work, and the new £2 billion Kickstart Scheme, creating hundreds of thousands of new, fully subsidised jobs for young people.