Covid-19: Economic Package Debate

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Department: Cabinet Office

Covid-19: Economic Package

Lord Bishop of Durham Excerpts
Wednesday 13th May 2020

(4 years, 1 month ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Agnew of Oulton Portrait Lord Agnew of Oulton
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I assure the noble Lord that we are aware of the regional differences that will emerge in the aftermath of this crisis. It is worth reminding the House that the furlough scheme, for example, applies across all devolved regions.

On his comments on health sector and social care workers, I add my congratulations on, and respect for, the huge amount that they have done. We cannot at this stage commit to any future payments, because, as I mentioned, we will have an enormous financial hill to climb at the end of this crisis. However, I recognise the great work that they have done.

Lord Bishop of Durham Portrait The Lord Bishop of Durham
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The extension of the JRS is extremely welcome. Here in the north-east, we have a worryingly high infection rate and among the highest average death rates per capita. Will Her Majesty’s Government consider taking a regional approach to phasing out the JRS, ensuring that the economic and social needs of each region are reflected adequately in the Government’s ongoing support?

Lord Agnew of Oulton Portrait Lord Agnew of Oulton
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To answer the right reverend Prelate’s question, what we have always done through this crisis over the past few months is take a flexible approach and respond as events confront us. If we see that different regions are suffering more than others, we will, of course, look on that as sympathetically as we can.