Councillor Matthew Brown, Leader of Preston City Council, has expressed his support for people in isolation due to coronavirus to receive statutory sick pay.Advertisement
Councillor Brown is supporting the newly launched ‘Time Out to Help Out’ campaign. The campaign wants to see workers paid at a normal rate if they are requested to self-isolate under the national Test and Trace system, and are unable to work from home.
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester and Steve Rotheram, Mayor of Liverpool City Region, plus the General Secretary of the TUC launched the campaign which has been backed by Unison, GMB, Usdaw, Unite and CWU.
Mayors Burnham and Rotheram are also calling for self-employed people to be able to claim for loss of earnings. The campaign suggests this be done in the same way as the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme or Jury Service, which allows people to claim for loss of earnings up to a maximum daily amount.
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In a statement released on Wednesday 12 August, Councillor Matthew Brown said: “It is vital that UK workers are supported financially if requested to self-isolate due to coronavirus.
“Not everyone is able to carry out their job from home and many fear the repercussions on their job and their livelihood by doing the right thing and self-isolating when requested.
“At £95.85 per week statutory sick pay is a significant drop in income for many people and not sufficient to support families, forcing people to choose between self-isolating and putting food on the table.
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“If we are serious about tackling one of the potential hurdles to keep our community safe we must remove barriers that hold people back to self-isolate.
“Therefore we are backing the campaign from the Mayors of Liverpool City Region and Greater Manchester and the TUC to allow people the financial security to self-isolate if requested.
“Only by doing this will our test and trace system achieve its aims and help tackle this virus.”
Preston recently joined Greater Manchester, Blackburn with Darwen and East Lancashire in localised lockdowns, not allowing members from different households to meet at each other’s houses or indoors in a public space.
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Do you agree with Councillor Brown? Should sick pay be available to those in self-isolation? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.