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COVID-19: Support for businesses and workers

Along with the government, we continue to support businesses and workers affected by COVID-19.

Support for businesses

Funding and support for businesses is available from a number of programmes and initiatives.

Recovery Loan Scheme

The Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS) is a government-backed loan scheme open to small and medium sized enterprises. The maximum amount of finance available is £2 million per business, with the government providing a guarantee to lenders of 70%. The scheme will end on 30 June 2022.

Help to Grow programme

The government has launched a new Help to Grow programme, designed to help small and medium sized businesses learn new skills, reach new customers and boost profits. To be eligible, businesses need to have been operating for more than one year and have between 5 and 249 employees.

Pavement license

Businesses such as restaurants, pubs, cafes, bars and ice cream parlours, can apply for a pavement licence which will permit them to place removable tables and chairs on highways adjacent to their premises to sell or serve food or drink.

Additional support

Further information and support for your business:

Support for the self-employed

Sources of help and support for self-employed workers.

Financial support

Self-employed people who are not eligible for Statutory Sick Pay can now make a claim for Universal Credit or New Style Employment and Support Allowance.

Additional support

Further information and support for self-employed workers:

Support and advice for workers

Ways to access financial support and courses to build skills and boost job prospects.

Financial support

You may be entitled to receive Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) at £99.35 per week if you are too ill to work. This is paid by your employer for up to 28 weeks. To check your sick pay entitlement, talk to your employer. View  Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) (GOV.UK) for more information.

If you are not eligible for SSP, for example if you are self-employed or earning below the Lower Earnings Limit of £118 per week, you can now more easily make a claim for Universal Credit or New Style Employment and Support Allowance.

Whether you are currently in or out of work, if you are on a low income and affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19, you will be able to access the full range of the welfare system, including Universal Credit.

Skills Toolkit

The government has recently produced a new online Skills Toolkit which provides easy to access, free, high-quality digital and numeracy courses to help build up skills, progress in work and boost job prospects. The platform offers a range of courses at all levels from introductory to advanced and is open to everyone, whether you want to learn new skills, are out of work or are just keen to keep busy during time spent at home.

Additional support

Safety measures guidance

Guidance to help keep workers and the public safe.

Workplaces

Food

Travel advice

Updated: 17 May 2022

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