The Government plans to give financial support to employees who are self-isolating due to COVID-19 but do not qualify for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) as they do not earn enough, which the Trades Union Congress (TUC) called for on the 05/03/20.
Matt Hancock, secretary of state for Health and Social Care echoed what Boris Johnson, Prime Minister has said that people should not be penalised for “doing the right thing”. The plan is to support self-employed individuals as well.
Mr Hancock said:
We’re also working on making sure that people who are self-employed or are in an employment contract that doesn’t allow them to get statutory sick pay – because they don’t earn the minimum amount or they don’t work full time – to make sure that they get the [financial] support they need as well.
Because if we as government are asking people to self-isolate then they shouldn’t be penalised for doing the right thing which is good for them but good for the whole community.
Mr Hancock is working with the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) to create these rules which will give these people support.
The TUC did not think this emergency legislation went far enough and called for #SickPayForAll that provides SSP for all workers despite how much they earn or for how long they have worked with that company.
Frances O’Grady, general secretary of the TUC at the time said:
Two million workers still don’t earn enough to qualify for statutory sick pay. They can’t afford not to work. And statutory sick pay still isn’t enough to live on.
Government must go further to ensure that no one is penalised for doing the right thing.