Empowering the Freelance Economy

Chancellor not budging on offering new schemes for UK’s ‘excluded’

Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s appearance at the Treasury Committee this afternoon did not garner the anticipated results that the estimated three million self-employed excluded from COVID-19 direct support schemes were hoping for.

Consumer finance advocate Martin Lewis of MoneySavingExpert took part in a photocall alongside MPs from the ExcludedUK All-Party Parliamentary Group and other supportive MPs outside the Treasury today as part of their petition submission process. However, it now looks like the 225 MPs from across 9 political parties in this APPG will have to explain to their affected constituents that their plight has not been re-considered.

Following the Treasury Committee meeting today, it looks like the Chancellor at present has no plans to meet with the APPG, nor budge on creating any new schemes for those that are self-employed, freelancers or contractors that for almost four months on, remain entirely or largely excluded from UK Government Covid-19 support schemes.

The Chancellor explained to Alison Thewliss, the Scottish National Party MP for Glasgow Central and Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Treasury), that those self-employed individuals with annual trading profits in excess of £50,000 were among those that were more likely to have the financial resilience to weather the crisis over those below the threshold. Even if that meant those affected were going just £1 over the threshold. The decision for the £50K threshold was to minimise any ‘dead weight’ in government funding.

These particular individuals are ineligible for support from the SEISS and as a self-employed person would only receive 80 percent of their average three-month trading profits, not their revenue.

Mr Steve Baker, Conservative MP for Wycombe, re-addressed his concerns to the Chancellor as you can hear in this video clip (also see below) from today’s Treasury Committee Meeting.

This Treasury meeting can be seen in full here courtesy of Parliamentlive.tv

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