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Third of South West workers at risk of job loss

Credit: Public Health England

A third of workers across our region are at risk of redundancy following the pandemic, a new report claims.

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) South West suggests that a recovery plan is needed to both protect employees and create new roles.

Unsurprisingly, it says workers who have used the job retention and self-employed income support schemes are most likely to have their jobs cut in the coming months.

According to figures published by the organisation, 32% of the region's workforce - around 878,800 people - have been on either government initiative during lockdown.

TUC regional secretary Nigel Costley said: “People are very worried about their jobs. Many have been laid off already. And just last week, our unions received dozens of redundancy notifications – with many more expected to come.

"This situation is only going to get worse unless something is done now.

“Losing your job is a dreadful experience – devastating for families. And devastating for our communities. 

“If we allow mass unemployment to take hold, our economy will be smaller, and the recovery, much slower".

The report called on local government bodies - including councils, local enterprise partnerships and combined authorities - to join forces and secure investment to boost local infrastructure.

It claimed better transport links and a wider range of jobs are needed in the region.

With a lower average pay, it is also reported that rural and coastal communities have been more severely affected by the Coronavirus crisis.

Mr. Costley added: "Investing in good jobs is at the heart of our recovery plan for the South West. Jobs in a reborn manufacturing sector. Jobs in the green tech we need to safeguard our future. More and better jobs in our revived tourism and creative sectors.

"It’s just common sense.

“And we must value our public services much more than we did before. Because after ten long years of cuts, our key workers found it much harder than it should have been".

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