More than a third of the working population have been supported since the coronavirus pandemic began, according to figures released one year on from the announcement of the government’s landmark Plan for Jobs.
- latest figures show the UK Government supported over 14.5 million jobs and individuals since pandemic began – more than a third of the working population
- statistics revealed on one-year anniversary of Plan for Jobs – with ministers marking milestone with visits across the UK
- part of unprecedented £352 billion support package which helped safeguard jobs, businesses and public services in every region and nation of the UK
Since the beginning of the crisis, the government has rolled out one of the most generous packages of support in the world to safeguard businesses and livelihoods across the UK – including the furlough and self-employment support schemes.
And a year ago, Chancellor Rishi Sunak set out the government’s Plan for Jobs – a blueprint to protect, support and create jobs across the UK and help people gain the skills they need to get into work through schemes such as Kickstart, apprenticeships and traineeships.
The Prime Minister and Chancellor highlighted how the Plan for Jobs is working – supporting more than 14.5 million individuals and jobs to date – and how it continues to be the right approach to support people through the next stage of the recovery.
The statistics come alongside other positive signs of economic recovery, with the latest OBR forecast for the peak in unemployment around a half of what was previously feared, a difference of almost two million people. And the number of employees on payroll also at its highest level since last April.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
Last year, during one of the most uncertain periods of our history, we promised to step in and shield workers, their incomes and their livelihoods as we fought to contain the coronavirus pandemic.
Through our Plan for Jobs, we have delivered on that promise – safeguarding millions of jobs through the furlough and self-employed support schemes and helping those who sadly lost their jobs to find new work.
Although we still have a significant task ahead of us, I am determined to make sure that that every corner of the UK benefits from our Plan for Jobs. As we reopen carefully, we will make sure we support people into high skilled and better paid jobs as we build back better from the pandemic.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said:
This time last year we faced a potential tidal wave of job losses with the UK on the brink of a financial crisis like no other in history.
But we made a Plan for Jobs, we stuck to that plan and it’s working – supporting more than 14.5 million jobs to date and helping people gain the skills they need to get back into work.
We know the job is not yet done and our economy needs to recover – which is why we are continuing our support to give everyone the best chance of moving on from this crisis.
To mark the milestone and impact that the Plan for Jobs has had to date, the Prime Minister and Chancellor join more than 20 ministers from across government in visiting businesses and individuals across the UK who have played a crucial role in helping to deliver this plan.
Other senior government ministers have also visited businesses and projects which have benefited from the Plan for Jobs. The Work and Pensions Secretary will visit a Work Academy Programme in London helping jobseekers into construction, the Housing Secretary is going to a construction site for new homes in the East Midlands and the Secretary of State for Scotland is going to a roofing facility in Lockerbie which is in the middle of a major recruitment drive.
Rishi Sunak visited a number of businesses in Wolverhampton to hear their experiences of the pandemic and how they have been able to hire and retain their teams.
As part of an unprecedented £352 billion support package, the Plan for Jobs has supported and created jobs across the country.
Throughout the pandemic, 11.6 million jobs have been protected through the furlough scheme and 2.9 million self-employed workers have been provided with £25.2 billion in government grants.
The £2 billion Kickstart scheme is helping to create new, fully subsidised jobs for young people across the UK.
To ensure job seekers have the support they need, the government recruited an additional 13,500 work coaches across Great Britain and provided more than £200 million for the Job Entry Targeted Support scheme in Great Britain to help those unemployed for over three months get back into work.
To tackle long-term unemployment, the new £2.9 billion Restart scheme in England and Wales will support over a million long-term unemployed people and help them find work.
Under our new hiring incentives payments in England, more than 70,000 apprentices have been newly hired of which 50,000 were under 25 years old and 8,800 people started traineeships in the first two quarters of 2020/21.
Around 65,000 people in England and Scotland have enrolled in the Sector-based Work Academy Programme since March 2020 while £101 million has enabled. School and college leavers to study courses in in-demand areas and get the skills they need.
This support will continue in the coming months as the country returns to normality alongside a number of other measures to support growth and businesses. This includes reduced rates of VAT for hospitality businesses until the end of the year and Help to Grow and the super-deduction – meaning more businesses investing and creating more jobs.
- read more about the Plan for Jobs online.
- 33.1m is the UK’s working population
The breakdown of the 14.5 million jobs and individuals supported is as follows:
- 11.6 million employments furloughed
- 2.9 million self-employed individuals supported with government grants
- 8,800 traineeship starts recorded in the first two quarters of 2020/21
- 65,000 people in England and Scotland have enrolled in the Sector-based Work Academy Programme (SWAP) since March 2020