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Commenting on today’s (Thursday) announcement by the Chancellor that the Job Retention Scheme will be extended until April, TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:  

“Unions have been pushing hard for the job retention scheme to be extended. This decision will bring some much-needed certainty for workers and businesses. 

“But the threat of mass unemployment has not gone away. The government must provide additional support for the industries hit hardest by this crisis – like retail and hospitality. 

“And it must create the jobs we need by investing now in jobs in green infrastructure, transport and our public services. 

“Fast-tracking spending on these areas will cut unemployment and help the UK recover more quickly from this pandemic.” 

On the need to fix the holes in the current scheme, Frances O’Grady said: 

“Ministers should take this opportunity to improve the scheme, with a minimum wage floor, clear support for training and better support for the self-employed.” 

On the need to help workers who lose their jobs Frances O’Grady added: 

“We can’t afford for this pandemic to scar people’s prospects the way recent crises have.  

“Ministers must help those who lose their jobs get back on their feet by providing a permanent boost to universal credit'. 

Editors note

- TUC analysis that we could create 1.2 million jobs in green transport and infrastructure is available here:  
- TUC analysis that we could unlock 600,000 job vacancies in the public sector is available at:   
- The TUC has called on the government to raise universal credit to £260 a week: 

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