COVID-19 Update 57
Tuesday 9 June 2020
Dear AOA Member,
Yesterday evening I wrote to the Chancellor to formalise our request for the Job Retention Scheme (JRS) to be extended beyond October for the aviation sector. In the letter I make clear the current usage of the scheme by our airport members, the absence of a sectoral support package, the predicted long recovery for aviation and the need for robust Government support if the sector is to prosper in the future. This morning HM Treasury have updated their online factsheet clarifying some of the questions regarding the changes to Job Retention Scheme coming in July. It is now clear that organisations must have previously furloughed an employee for a full-three week period before the 30 June, for those employees to be eligible for the Job Retention Scheme after 1 July. It has also been made clear that from 1 July, the number of employees an employer can claim for in any claim period cannot exceed the maximum number they have claimed for under any single previous claim under the current CJRS. HM Treasury also provided this timeline of upcoming changes to the Job Retention Scheme, for information.
Meanwhile, press coverage of the quarantine measures continues with fervour. I’m sure many of you saw the stories reporting on how the first day of the policy went, with a number mishaps and teething issues for the implementation. Alongside these stories is the ongoing speculation that the quarantine measures could be lifted by the first review point at the end of June, if not earlier. It’s fair to say that MPs and industry have made quite a substantial amount of noise about the impact of the policy and it’s good to see that the message appears to be landing. Until we hear of an official change in policy, the AOA will continue our lobbying efforts on this matter as a priority.
Today, AOA also attended the CAA-IRG’s Operations Directors Liaison Group, which discussed various aspects of restart and recovery work, including ensuring that UK actions are correctly aligned with international measures and standards agreed at an ICAO level. The AOA team also met with other aviation trade associations to plan further parliamentary action with supportive MPs; while keen to sustain the pressure on the quarantine policy, we’re also cognisant that there other asks and priorities for the sector where parliamentarians can be of help.