The Chancellor of the Exchequer has been questioned in Parliament about the Government’s various support measures and was pushed on a new Targeted Income Grant Scheme (TIGS) that was presented by the Treasury that may raise hopes for the many self-employed who have been struggling during the coronavirus crisis.
The Express reports that Rishi Sunak and HMRC have been heavily criticised for the Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) that has excluded millions of self-employed workers as they have been deemed ineligible due to stringent rules.
Campaigners scubas ExcludedUK claim that approximately three million self-employed workers are unable to receive COVID-19 related support from the government.
It has brought the Gaps in Support All-Party Parliamentary Group to urge the Mr Sunak to give his backing to the new scheme to help the workers who have fallen through the cracks.
Tracy Brabin, the Labour MP for Batley and Spen, asked the Chancellor for an official response after he was presented with a detailed and costed policy proposal for TIGS.
“This scheme would be a vital first step in giving meaningful financial support to many of the millions who have been locked out of the current schemes, desperate after nearly a year of the COVID pandemic,” she said, asking Mr Sunak if he plans to support the scheme.
The Chancellor briefly responded, but confirmed that the Treasury was considering the scheme, along with submissions of other options, but insisted that any official announcements would not be made until the March Budget.
TIGS support itself will be broken down for four specific sections of the self-employed community should it be introduced, with the following excluded groups potentially receiving support:
- The newly self-employed (i.e., after April 2019)
- PAYE freelancers
- Ltd Company Directors
- Those excluded by the 50/50 rule in SEISS
So far, the plan has the support of 262 MPs spread across various political parties, with the proposals setting out eligible recipients will get a one-off targeted grant worth between £3,500 and £7,500.
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