Alyn Smith, MP for Stirling has issued fresh calls for the UK government to extend the furlough scheme into 2021 – after Germany indicated that it will look to extend its version of the scheme to 24 months.
The UK Tory Chancellor has already cut back on the Job Retention Scheme, with the furlough scheme set to end entirely on 31st October 2020.
Large chains such as WH Smith and Boots, who hire significant numbers locally, have already announced national redundancies with small and medium sized businesses across Stirling facing similar pressures. Alyn Smith has said a premature end to the furlough scheme in the middle of a global pandemic would be ‘catastrophic’ to the local economy.
Alyn Smith MP said:
‘Over the last few weeks, I’ve visited several small and medium sized businesses all across Stirling, and a worry expressed time and time again has been the closure of the furlough scheme.
‘In other European countries like Germany, reports of an extension to their version of the furlough scheme has come as a welcome relief to millions of workers and businesses who are worried about their future.
‘Businesses here in Stirling deserve that breathing space too. Many are seasonal, and as they have lost crucial summer trade they will need a lifeline to make it through the coming winter.
‘The UK Chancellor must step up and extend the furlough scheme, or give the Scottish Government the necessary borrowing powers to do it ourselves. Failing to act will invite severe economic hardship on Scotland, and businesses across my constituency.’
Attached: Picture of Alyn Smith MP with Wilma from the Beech Tree Café, Dunblane