Why the government should extend its furlough scheme indefinitely

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When Chancellor Rishi Sunak committed £330bn to saving the economy from the coronavirus crisis, you might have assumed austerity had been banished for good. But the government's handling of the furlough scheme, which Sunak plans to scale back from July, shows that the logic of austerity endures, writes New Statesman contributing writer Paul Mason today.

"'How are we going to pay for this?' is a sensible question but the obvious answer is: not by flatlining our economy and destroying the NHS and social care all over again," he writes. "And not by forcing millions of workers to take a wage cut in July, or letting their bosses throw them on the dole, or letting banks drown in bad debts."

He argues the furlough scheme, which pays up to 80 per cent of workers' wages while they are temporarily laid off, should be extended indefinitely, he argues.

You can read the full piece here.


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