SNP MSP: FOLLOW GERMANY’S LEAD OR HAND SCOTLAND POWERS IT NEEDS
MSP for Midlothian North and Musselburgh, Colin Beattie, has issued fresh calls for the UK government to extend the furlough scheme into 2021 – after Germany indicated that it will look to extend its version of the scheme to 24 months.
The UK Tory Chancellor has already cut back on the Job Retention Scheme, with the furlough scheme set to end entirely on 31st October 2020.
With chains such as Boots, WH Smith and the Royal Mail who employ many staff across Midlothian and East Lothian announcing widescale job loses – the SNP MSP has said a premature end to the furlough scheme in the middle of a global pandemic would be ‘catastrophic’ to the local economy.
Commenting, SNP MSP Colin Beattie said:
“In the past few weeks alone we’ve seen businesses such as Boots, WH Smith and Royal Mail announce substantial job loses that could affect staff here in Mid and East Lothian.
“In European countries like Germany, reports of an extension to their version of the furlough scheme will come as a welcome relief to millions of workers and businesses who are worried about their future.
“Yet in stark contrast, the UK Tory Chancellor at Westminster is choosing to prematurely shut down our furlough scheme and throw thousands of Scottish jobs on the scrap heap.
“The jobs and livelihoods of working families here in Midlothian and East Lothian are on the line. It’s time for the UK government to rethink its catastrophic plans to scrap the furlough scheme early and extend the measures into 2021.
“If they continue to refuse, then the Tories should let Holyrood have these powers so Scotland can take the action we need to save jobs.”