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Rishi Sunak

Campaigners force government to partially close furlough loophole

The government has expanded the eligibility criteria for its coronavirus job retention scheme, following pressure from campaigners.

Last month, Scram News revealed a loophole in the Treasury’s job retention scheme, which pledges to cover up to 80% of furloughed staff’s salary.

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We revealed that there was a huge group of people slipping through the net due to the scheme only covering those on company payrolls from 28th February onwards.

But today, following sustained pressure from Scram community members and online activists, who sent hundreds of tweets to Chancellor Rishi Sunak, the government has extended the date to 19th March, the day before the scheme was announced.

This means employers who were forced to furlough people who started a job before 19th March will be able to claim government support.

However, difficulties remain as the scheme still only covers those who had been formally logged on the company’s payroll by 19th March.

Posting on a Facebook group for those affected, one campaigner Adam Chan said: “This shows there can be movement, and that there can be more.”

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