But this plan has already been overtaken by events.
As more people have contracted the virus, pubs and restaurants in central Scotland have been told to close.
And there are reports that licensed premises in the north of England will be instructed to lower their shutters next week.
This raises the prospect of large numbers of workers losing their jobs because their employers are not taking in money and workers can’t get enough hours to qualify for the short-time working scheme.
We need greater support for affected areas
The TUC is calling for:
Ministers must step up
Government interventions so far have undoubtedly saved large numbers of jobs.
The existing furlough scheme has supported nine million workers during the coronavirus pandemic. But it’s due to close at the end of this month.
Short-time working arrangements could be beneficial in some sectors - but little to no use for many workers in areas moving towards higher restrictions.
A business must be open to allow short-time working. So we need greater support for wages – and for the self-employed - in affected areas.
The government also needs to sort out existing problems with low sick pay and ‘test and trace’, so people can self-isolate when required.
Finally, Ministers must get round the table with businesses and unions and hammer out a plan to save jobs - and protect whole industries from going to the wall.
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