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19/04/2020 - Coronavirus: Unions hit out at lack of support for the self-employed

CV Self Employed FBUnions representing self-employed workers have spoken out against the government's neglect of their financial problems.

Head of Bectu Philippa Childs said: “The Chancellor’s support package for workers will come as a devastating blow to freelance and self-employed workers who needed much more support than they are being given.

“These workers are looking to the Chancellor in desperation for a vital lifeline and he has badly let them down, despite his grand promise to do ‘whatever it takes’.

“It is clear the Chancellor simply doesn’t understand the hardship these workers are in- telling them to simply claim universal credit while other workers have their incomes protected is cruel and unfair.

“The delay in the self-assessment tax deadline is something Bectu had been campaigning for and we are pleased the Chancellor has listened to us and our members on this but it really is the least he could have done.

“He must urgently revise his income support plan to include these workers and not force them onto the welfare system and we will be making urgent representations to
government to make sure all our members are protected during this crisis.”

Pat Harrington, general secretary of Solidarity said: "The government has taken a bold step to protect the income of employees. We must also protect the incomes of self-employed workers. To leave them to the fickle fate of the benefits system is wrong."

Prospect general secretary Mike Clancy said:

“There is still no real protection for freelance, self-employed and contract workers who seem not to be covered by the income protection scheme and are being left to struggle through the inadequate benefits system.

“Nobody should have to endure this crisis without support. Prospect will continue to fight hard for a truly comprehensive approach that covers all workers.”