The Government has a broad set of policies in place to support businesses and individuals during COVID-19. The Government has designed the next stage of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) by balancing the need to protect jobs against the need to restart the economy as the Covid-19 backdrop improves. The CJRS scheme must be temporary and the Government must ensure people can get back to work when it is safe to do so and get the UK economy up and running again.
The Government has recently announced its Plan for Jobs. In it, in order to protect workers and encourage employers to minimise redundancies, the Government introduced a Jobs Retention Bonus. This will ensure that UK employers will receive a one-off bonus of £1,000 for each furloughed employee who is still employed as of 31 January 2021.
The Government has also announced unprecedented support to help unemployed people in Great Britain find a job. The Government is providing £1.2bn to significantly expand and enhance work search support, including doubling the number of work coaches, additional investment into the Flexible Support Fund to provide direct support at a local level, and using externally contracted provision to expand support even further.
Recognising that young people are particularly at risk, the Government has also launched a new £2bn Kickstart Scheme, creating hundreds of thousands of new, fully subsidised jobs for young people across Great Britain, as well as a guaranteed foundation of support to all 18-24 year olds on Universal Credit in the Intensive Worksearch group, through its new youth offer.
In England, the Government will also support people to build the skills they need to get into work, including by providing funding to triple the number of traineeships and sector-based work academy placements, new payments to employers to hire apprentices, and new funding to expand the National Career Service.
In addition to what is outlined in the Plan for Jobs, those who struggle to find work for a longer period will also benefit from a new, large-scale employment support offer. Further details will be announced shortly.