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Lord Adonis: Support for the self-employed is "the big missing link at the moment"

Peter Kelly
Mar 24, 2020

Lord Andrew Adonis believes support for the self-employed will be announced soon however the unpredictable nature of earnings the self-employed face could potentially be why a system has not yet been created. 

Last Tuesday Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a £330billion package in a bid to help stabilise the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Measures to help workers and businesses during these tough times were welcomed with open arms. It was announced that the Government would pay 80% of someone's wage who has been kept on by an employer but were unable to work, up to £2,500 a month. This would be backdated to 1st March and would last for three months however it could do be extended if needed.

However policies to support the self-employed were non-existent, consequently creating fury among many of the roughly 5 million self-employed people in the UK who were not being helped in this massive financial package.

Lord Andrew Adonis was asked by Martin Bell on Love Sport Radio whether the self-employed would see policies introduced soon which were designed directly to help them.


"I think we will because all of Whitehall and Westminster are talking about it. It's the big missing link at the moment. But whereas if you're in a job, you'll get 80% of your salary covered. If you're on income support you're getting £1,000 pounds up lift which is long overdue in my view, but it again means the people at the bottom can do better. 

"Those whose earnings were from self employment, many of whom- probably like your [Martin Bell's] saxophone friend had them completely wiped out because there are no gigs going on at the moment at all, obviously you're not allowed to go to a pub or a music venue or anything.

"They [the self-employed] need support too and the principle on which people in jobs have had support, which is to maintain most of their previous income- we can't afford to do the lot but most of it- on the grounds that we need to keep people in jobs, keep their livelihoods together so that they can then, as it were, take on from where they left off before. It's what we all want to do.

"I think the reason they [the Treasury] delayed [helping the self-employed], they're not quite sure what the mechanism is because of course people who are in employment, they have completely predictable salaries, they're paid through PAYE so the Treasury knows who they are, can get the money to them to police the system quite easily. They're clearly having difficulty devising the system [for the self-employed]."


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