We’ve stayed at home. We’ve clapped for the NHS. We’ve fought through hordes of unmasked shoppers to retrieve the last of the loo roll. Now the government calls upon us to go on an adventure into uncharted territories in a bid to save the nation? What heroic task must we undertake? What mountain must we climb in our quest to defeat the pandemic and throw COVID-19 into the fiery pits from whence it was forged?
Go out for dinner.
Yep. The government’s new catchy slogan is Eat Out to Help Out. This £500m scheme is offering diners 50% off their meal at restaurants across the UK every Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday throughout August. Of the various government soundbites we’ve heard in the last few months, this one might just be my favourite. No word from Chancellor Rishi Sunak on how he came up with it, perhaps his wife, billionaire heiress Akshata Murthy, gave him a hand. The discount is capped at £10 per head per visit and doesn’t include alcohol – so he won’t be sending us home completely satisfied then.
Now don’t get me wrong, nothing makes me happier than being told to eat out more.
But some other, more discerning folks have pointed out some flaws in this plan, which is kind of buzz-killy of them if you ask me. Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury Bridget Phillipson said: “For weeks, the government has been promising Britain a ‘New Deal’. But instead, we got a Meal Deal.” Ouch. Who doesn’t like a meal deal though Bridget?
She’s not the only critic though. The Institute for Fiscal Studies and Resolution Foundation have called the scheme “poorly targeted” claiming it will largely benefit wealthier households that aren’t in need of as much assistance. No matter how much Rishi eats out, the Resolution Foundation reckons it’s just “too small to make a major difference”.
Takeaways aren’t included either, which IFS Deputy Director Helen Miller finds a little confusing, pointing out that ‘just a week ago we thought the risks of eating in restaurants were sufficiently high that we banned it’ and that some people might be a little reluctant to throw away their masks and dig into a dough balls doppio at Pizza Express. Honestly, I might be willing to risk death for some dough balls and a padana.
TT’s top story
London-based Envestors recently raised £2m and have now announced that they plan to use these funds to grow their digital marketplace, Envestry, and the network of partners using it. Hiring is anticipated to support these aims.
Have you heard?
Eating out isn’t all Rishi cares about
The Chancellor has also announced a new Plan for Jobs that plans to “protect, support and create” existing and new jobs through economic downturn.This includes a £40m investment in a job-finding support service. REC CEO Neil Carberry applauded this initiative and that the government “has recognised the vital role recruiters play in helping people find their feet when they become unemployed”. However, the Chancellor’s plan was also criticised by some for not going far enough to help people. Tania Bowers, Head of Public Policy at the Association of Professional Staffing Companies, said “we were disappointed that the chancellor chose not to reduce employer costs through an amendment to National Insurance contributions – reducing employer costs while also putting more money in people’s pockets would have been a welcome intervention at this stage”.
LinkedIn have released their hiring data for June
Their overall consensus is that hiring has continued to stabilise globally, with growth beginning in some countries. Countries that have more effectively dealt with the crisis are obviously showing a better recovery in the jobs market as well, with Singapore showing the strongest growth and China following close behind. The UK and US currently remain stable with modest but steady growth.
App of the week
PIXELS FIGHTING: Okay so technically this isn’t an app but who cares about technicalities? Technicalities are lame and boring. You don’t want to be thinking about technicalities. You want to watch pixels battle it out in an eternal war. Who will win? Blue or grey? Pink or green? Does it even matter in the end? What are they even fighting for? Victory, of course. What else is there?
Word of the week
having a harmful effect, especially in a gradual or subtle way.
‘The inability to access the gym combined with their national duty to eat out as much as possible was having a pernicious effect on the recruiter’s body.’
Dog of the week
Tobi the cocker spaniel is excellent at chasing his own tail but a little scared of his own bark. He can climb the side of his puppy pen and escape in under 20 seconds.