John McDonnell MP, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor, responding to the Chancellor’s further economic announcements, said:
“The Chancellor has shifted direction but unfortunately not far enough or fast enough.
“The Government must give people the economic security to stay at home by lifting the level of Statutory Sick Pay, but it appears that the Government hasn’t done that today. Sick pay is being left at a level that the Health Secretary said he could not live on, yet this is what the self-employed are being asked to get by on.
“The Chancellor’s wage protection plan sets out no obligation for employers to keep staff on, and no commitment to full wages being paid, with the cap on incomes meaning that many people will take a significant pay cut.
“This will also take some weeks to roll out at a time when wages need to be guaranteed more urgently.
“Other benefits, including for carers, are not being lifted adequately.
“The Chancellor said he would do whatever it takes, but he can and should go further – and we will keep working constructively with Government to ensure the best possible response to the Coronavirus crisis.”