With the toughest restrictions put in place here in the North East, more pressure is being heaped on already-struggling sectors like hospitality and the arts. Without greater support, businesses will close and jobs will be lost. And support for local government to manage the impact is still much too low.
The spending review was a missed opportunity to fix some of these urgent issues. Ministers must act to prevent unnecessary hardship this winter by providing targeted packages for hard-hit industries, boosting sick pay to a real Living Wage so that people can afford to self-isolate and increasing Universal Credit.
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