PM announces new support for self-employed but we must go further
Treating certain self-employed workers as "second class citizens" will do "irreparable damage" to the UK music industry and slow the economic recovery.
The Prime Minister yesterday announced a doubling of the provision for the self-employed today (from 40-80%), further to the letter we sent to the Chancellor on Monday.
Ed Barker, director of Save Live Music, said:
“The government has clearly listened and this is a welcome step in the right direction. But there are still 1.2 million people - a quarter of the self-employed workforce - who have been entirely left out of government assistance packages altogether since March, including hundreds of West End and orchestral musicians, along with around 3 million sole company directors. There is no good reason to treat these self-employed workers as second class citizens as their work has been just as severely affected by lockdown restrictions.
"75% of musicians are self-employed, and no musician I know wants a government handout – they want to get back to work. The government risks doing irreparable damage to the UK’s live music, cultural and entertainment sector if it doesn’t provide the same level of support to the self-employed as it does every other type of worker. This will only hamper the nation's economic recovery given the £5bn the music industry contributes to the economy each year, not to mention the huge tax receipts the Treasury gets from the industry."