Last week’s poll: Should the furlough scheme be extended?

In last week’s poll we asked whether the UK Coronavirus job retention scheme should be extended to protect jobs and skills in key areas of industry.

This poll was conducted between July 21 – July 28, 2020 and received 370 votes

Manufacturing organisation Make UK has called on the government to extend its furlough scheme by a further six months amidst growing fears of mass redundancies in key areas of industry.

Originally introduced in April, the so-called coronavirus job retention scheme is due to wind up at the end of October. But with many firms still struggling, it’s feared that the scheme might not protect highly skilled roles in some of the UK’s key sectors.

Make UK’s call comes on the back of its latest Manufacturing Monitor survey, which shows that the number of companies planning to make redundancies in the next six month has risen to 53%.

Carried out earlier this month and based on responses from 170 companies the survey found that almost a third of companies (32.3%) are planning to make between 11% and 25% of employees redundant with just under 8% of companies planning to make between a quarter and half their workforce redundant.

The body has called on the UK government to follow the multi-billion Euro support packages announced by major European competitors in Germany, France and Italy by extending the furlough scheme by six months, specifically for the automotive and aerospace sectors.

“There is no disguising the fact these redundancy plans make for very painful reading,” commented Make UK chief executive Stephen Phipson. “As well as the distressing personal impact on livelihoods across the UK, Industry cannot afford to lose these high value skills which will be essential to rebuilding our economy and investing in the industries of the future.”

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