Government Urged To Consider Giving £500 Voucher To Every UK Adult
With the restrictions put in place to stop the spread of coronavirus now being lifted, the focus of many has turned to how to rejuvenate the ailing economy, and get sectors such as the arts, retail, and hospitality industries back to normal.
With that in mind, The Resolution Foundation has asked Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak and his team to consider handing out the shopping vouchers in order to boost struggling high streets with an influx of cash.
It's all part of a proposed £30 billion ($37.4bn) plan to boost the economy and spend our way out of the almost inevitable economic downturn that will follow the pandemic.
The proposed amount is £500 ($624) for each adult in the UK, and £250 ($312) per child.
Sounds good, right? But how would it all work?
Well, the vouchers themselves would only be redeemable in areas like hospitality - so, the pub then? - as well as face to face retail - no more Amazon - and tourism.
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According to the foundation, this would boost demand, which would help out businesses and their workers.
It comes as the Chancellor prepares to make a statement regarding the government's plans to get out of the oncoming economic turmoil.
James Smith, a research director at the Resolution Foundation, told The Guardian: "Social distancing has huge implications for firms in sectors like retail, hospitality, tourism and leisure that will last into the reopening phase.
"That is why the jobs of so many workers in these sectors are in the firing line. The chancellor's recovery package on Wednesday should reflect this unique economic challenge.
"As well as setting out the biggest ever peacetime job support programme, the chancellor should get Britain spending in places where it's needed most."
"A universal high street voucher scheme to be spent only in these sectors would kickstart demand in the right parts of our economy, boost living standards and deliver targeted support to the businesses that need help the most."
While the Treasury has declined to comment on the plans, Sunak is to outline 'the next stage in our plan to secure Britain's recovery' this Wednesday and is expected to announce significant investment in the National Careers Service in order to get people back into work, as well as making announcements on the furlough scheme and support for specific sectors.
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