The Government’s comprehensive and generous Plan for Jobs will protect jobs and people’s livelihoods in Redditch, Rachel Maclean MP has said.

Yesterday (July 8th), Chancellor Rishi Sunak revealed the Government’s £30 billion Plan for Jobs – designed to support people to find the jobs that are out there, creating new jobs through investing in our infrastructure and housing, and protecting jobs by revitalising the hard-hit sectors upon which many jobs depend.

Throughout the coronavirus crisis, the Government has put in place a £160 billion plan to protect people’s jobs, incomes and businesses – one of the largest and most comprehensive in the world. And the Treasury’s Impact of COVID-19 on working household incomes analysis, published yesterday, shows the Government’s interventions significantly protected people’s incomes, with the least well off in society benefiting the most.

As the furlough scheme, which has protected 13,100 jobs in Redditch, tapers off flexibly, the Government will reward employers who successfully bring staff back from furlough. The Jobs Retention Bonus Scheme will see a one-off payment of £1,000 to the business for every employee who was furloughed previously and who is successfully kept on continuously until January.

The Government is targeting support for young people. Hundreds of thousands of new jobs for young people will be created through a new £2 billion Kickstart Scheme – to give young people the best possible chance of getting a job. The scheme will directly pay businesses to create new, decent and high-quality jobs for any 16-24 year old at risk of long-term unemployment.

For the first time ever the Government will pay employers £1,000 to take on trainees, with triple the number of places there are now, to get young people ready for work. The £111 million funding will be used to triple the scale of Traineeships, which consist of work experience placements, training and work preparation for 16-24 year-olds.

The Government is also providing £2,000 to employers for each new apprentice they hire under the age of 25, helping more people into the workplace while developing key skills. Business will get £1,500 for any apprentice aged over 25.

Young people who have just left school will be supported by giving them the skills they need to find work in high-value sectors, such as engineering, construction and social care. The Government will provide £101 million to help 18 and 19 year olds to take high value courses at Levels 2 and 3 where work opportunities are not available.

The National Careers Service will be expanded to help more young people find work or training. £32 million will be provided to recruit more careers advisers for the National Careers Service, so that it can provide advice to 269,000 more people.

The Government will create an Opportunity Guarantee so every young person has the chance of an apprenticeship or an in-work placement. As the Prime Minister announced last week, the Government will provide an Opportunity Guarantee to give young people the skills and confidence they need to find they job that is right for them.

As we make Redditch a greener and cleaner place to live, the Government will upgrade the energy efficiency of homes across England through a new Green Homes Grant, saving people hundreds of pounds on their energy bills, while helping to meet our goal of Net Zero by 2050. £2 billion will be provided in total to allow people to apply for a voucher, to fund at least two-thirds of the cost of upgrading the energy performance of their homes – up to a maximum of £5,000. Low-income households will be eligible for up to 100% of government funding, up to £10,000. This measure will also reduce energy bills by up to £300 a year.

A pilot to decarbonise social housing will also be launched. This will reducing energy bills by an average of £200 for some of the poorest households in society. We are providing £50 million to pilot new approaches for retrofitting social housing at scale – meaning warmer and more energy efficient homes.

To catalyse the housing market, stamp duty will be temporarily scrapped on all homes under £500,000 to boost confidence in the housing market which will help to drive growth and create jobs. From today, 90% of people getting on or moving up the property ladder will pay no stamp duty at all – equating to an average saving of £4,500. This will apply until 31st March 2021.

Further unprecedented measures to support the economy will be introduced, including temporarily cutting VAT to 5% for the tourism and hospitality sectors, giving a much-needed boost to some of the industries hardest hit by coronavirus.

And something that has never been done in the UK before, a new Eat Out to Help Out scheme will be launched. This will give people up to 50% off meals out, encouraging people back into restaurants, cafes and pubs. Anyone who eats at a participating business, Monday to Wednesday for the month of August, can receive up to 50% off food and non-alcoholic drinks, up to a value of £10 per person.

Rachel said: “This is a comprehensive and generous Plan for Jobs. I am proud that the Government has put an unprecedented and generous package of support in place to protect people and their livelihoods in Redditch.

“In the coming weeks we will be presenting our recovery plan for Redditch. As part of a ‘One Redditch’ approach, all levels of local government have come together to draw up ambitious plans for our vision for Redditch for years to come. We must recharge Redditch in the wake of coronavirus, whilst continuing to unlock our town’s full potential.”