“There is no doubt that the speed and scale of the government’s income support packages will have provided a financial lifeline for many struggling as a result of the pandemic and will have averted the wholesale loss of jobs as we have witnessed in the US.
“However, the Committee has sent a clear message to the government that the speed of response has left many ineligible for support, and the “hard edge” built into the design of the support measures has meant that many have fallen between the cracks and are vulnerable to hardship.
“In total, one million people have lost livelihoods as a result of the pandemic while being locked out of support. These include limited company directors who receive the majority of their income through dividends, the self-employed with trading profits above £50,000, new starters and PAYE freelance workers.
“Those locked out of the first round of income support measures must be considered by the government in their forthcoming economic recovery package. These groups will provide the engine for recovery, and they need to be firing on all cylinders in the coming months.”