The Chancellor has announced today a number of measures designed to support public services, businesses and individuals affected by coronavirus (COVID-19).

These include:

  • emergency money for the NHS
  • a £500m fund to help local authorities support vulnerable people
  • reimbursing small employers (fewer than 250 employees) any statutory sick pay paid to employees for the first 14 days of sickness absence.
  • statutory sick pay for those who are advised to self-isolate, even if they have not displayed symptoms
  • making it quicker and easier for those on zero hours contracts (gig economy workers) to get benefits
  • waiving or reducing business rates for shops, cinemas, restaurants and music venue
  • removing the requirement for benefit claimants to physically attend job centres if they been advised to stay at home
  • introducing a scheme allowing banks to offer loans of up to £1.2m to support small and medium-sized businesses