Renfrewshire MP Mhairi Black has said the furlough scheme must continue for as long as Scotland and the other devolved nations require it and asked the Scottish Secretary to commit to maintaining access.
At Scotland Questions, SNP Shadow Scottish Secretary Mhairi Black asked Alister Jack to maintain access to the furlough scheme for as long as lockdown continues in each of the devolved nations – or to devolve fiscal powers so the devolved governments can implement their own schemes.
Mr Jack said it was “a matter for the Chancellor”. Black said that if the UK government ‘is unwilling to provide support across the four nations, they must devolve the necessary fiscal powers to the devolved governments’.
Mhairi Black, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South, said: “The Tory government must come clean on whether it is intending to prematurely cut off access to the furlough scheme for thousands of people and businesses across Scotland.
“It is vital that people have the support they need for as long as the lockdown continues in each of the four UK nations. It would be completely unacceptable for the Tories to push households further into hardship by cutting off support during this public health emergency.
“If the UK government is unwilling to provide support across the four nations – it must devolve the necessary fiscal powers so the devolved governments can implement their own schemes.
“There’s no point in having a Scottish Secretary who won’t stand up for Scotland at Westminster. Instead of dodging questions, Alister Jack should join the SNP in pressing the UK government to provide the support people and businesses need during this crisis.”
Main image: MP Mhairi Black during yesterdays session of virtual Parliament