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Intel offer highlights need for short term work scheme says Sherlock

02 December 2022

Labour spokesperson on workers’ rights, Marie Sherlock has today (Friday 2nd December) said Intel’s unpaid leave offer will send a chill throughout workplaces across the country and added that workers must be protected from any impending pay cliff edge caused by lay-offs this winter.

Senator Sherlock said:

“We are deeply concerned about the development in Intel and the news will send chill across many workplaces with thousands of workers worrying about their livelihoods. In the face of trading and cost of operating difficulties, it is likely that there will be others who will need to impose temporary lay-offs and we need to act now.”

“The reality is the Government must recognise this situation and get to grips with it. They must ensure that no worker faces pay cliff edge, particularly with huge cost of living crisis. The Government’s current short term work scheme arrangements are simply not fit for purpose with workers facing cliff edge in earnings with only Jobseekers Benefit for the days not worked.  Workers are already under huge pressure with the vast majority suffering real wage cuts and rising mortgage or rental costs due to the increases in interest rates.

“We need a Government/employer co-funded short term work scheme in this country with workers receiving up to 80% of their pre-lay off income. To date, the Government’s response to challenges faced by companies in the form of the Temporary Business. Energy Support Scheme (TBESS) is a missed opportunity, with no conditions or incentives to retain jobs and protect incomes.”