We’re calling for the Chancellor to extend the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) in line with the Job Retention Scheme and provide a vital lifeline for our members.
We’ve written to Rishi Sunak to congratulate him on the programme but warn it’s too soon to end government support for the self-employed.
A similar scheme for furloughed workers has been extended to October, but the self-employed scheme ends this weekend.
Many of our self-employed members have seen work dry up since the start of the crisis.
Calls supporting the extension of the scheme have come from a cross-party group of 113 MPs, who join trade associations and professional unions in urging Mr Sunak not to pull the safety net from under the feet of millions of self-employed workers.
Kris Ambler, our Workforce Lead, said: "We’re working hard to support our members during what is an unprecedented health and economic crisis, and we need Government to continue listening to our concerns.
“The SEISS is by no means perfect, but without it many self-employed members simply cannot continue.”
As well as calling for an extension we’ve asked the Chancellor to review the scheme such that the newly self-employed, those who took maternity leave in the last three years and those with limited companies can benefit.
Earlier in May, the chancellor said the scheme was “under review” but, since then, he has not given an indication of its future.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, speaking on Thursday, said extending the scheme was "under review”.
Chancellor Sunak is leading this afternoon’s press conference, where we hope he’ll have listened to our concerns and make an announcement on the future of the scheme.
Meanwhile, we’ve also written to Labour leader Keir Starmer about our campaign to maximise the role of counselling and psychotherapy in rebuilding the fabric of the nation after the crisis.
In the letter, Martin Bell, our Deputy Head of Policy and Public Affairs, thanks Mr Starmer for raising the need to support people through the mental health crisis which has been exacerbated by the pandemic.
Martin said: “With the nation now struggling to come to terms with isolation, bereavement, financial insecurities and the changing impact of familial and work circumstances, we agree that it is more vital than ever that mental health support is accessible to all those who need it.
“Many counsellors and psychotherapists are already playing a vital role on the front line of this epidemic, supporting the most vulnerable people, including medical staff and other key workers who are struggling with their own mental health.
“As the crisis grows, demand for support will increase and professional therapists will also be critical in the longer-term, in rebuilding the fabric of the nation and helping people to return to normality.”
The campaign is supported by a coalition of professional bodies representing more than 100,000 qualified therapists across the United Kingdom, think tanks and campaign groups. A petition supporting the campaign has been signed by over 10,000 people.