Incentivise health and social care staff during covid19 outbreak by making wages untaxable
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During the worlds current pandemic in an already struggling health care system, the population are relying on health and social care to maintain normal work despite pressures that are growing. I propose that the government make any health care and social care/ front line hours worked untaxable. The bill for this is likely to be less than agency staffing. The workforce is likely to be short due to the outbreak because of staff self isolating themselves and schools closing (although not yet compulsory many are due to staff self isolating) so its fair to say there is a need incentivise other staff to work. Why else would they put themselves at risk front line for no extra benefits. (extra hours here not contracted obviously we care and will work our normal hours but there has to be incentives for overtime) It is essential hospitals and care homes stay performing so these staff should be rewarded for their help. Nurses have been asked to 'draw upon reserves' by Mr hancock something which many have been doing for a long time. So what is the government 'drawing upon' to help us? Or are they again relying on the good will gestures?
In not taxing these people you allow them to help the population and actually see some form of benefit for themselves! Many individuals in this sector also get other taxable incomes such as pensions(for all those retired nurses you want to recall) tax credite/ low income universal credit (as examples as there are many different reasons) and would lose or decrease this money if they work over their contracted hours as they're taxable wages. This would then affect their yearly income and many working people would lose childcare funding (as an example) for a longer period than this outbreak. They therefor cannot pick up shifts and help in this crisis because it would affect them financially longer term which is then not maintainable for them in the future! Some of us want to help we want to do more but wouldn't be able to if they're taxable hours as it can totally mess up yearly incomes for when this eventually comes to an end. Furthermore even staff who don't have any other money coming in are still not inclinced to work more than their contracted hours, the pressures are estimated to be huge and a lot of staff are already burnt out. This is due to increased risk of contracting the virus to then have more tax taken and not see an improvement financially. If we expect these EXPERIENCED SKILLED people to step up and into the front line putting themselves at greater risk they should be properly benefitted or they will not do it. This would also hopefully lessen the agency burden on struggling hospitals as their own staff may be more inclined to work overtime. This then keeps continuity in staffing and helps wards run smoother. It is not beyond the realms of possibility to do this and has been done before for armed forces in different circumstances. When many self isolating people will get statutory sick pay from the government those remaining front line should be rewarded for keeping calm and carrying on, as always. This pandemic is going to get worse and hospitals will likely be pushed to their limits. Set the incentives now so people can prepare because staff shouldn't have to increase their personal risk along with their families risk without some benefit. I've personally heard of certain jobs being offered some pretty good money to stay at work and isolate there but im yet to hear of any incentives for those who are most at risk and very needed... Such as those on minimum wage looking after our most vulnerable in care homes being asked to isolate for two weeks away from their loved ones and stay in these care homes to care for yours. Health and social care sectors have already had an incredibly intense winter leaving many departments already short staffed and remaining staff over strained if something does not get put in place fast for those remaining we will be at crisis staffing levels in no time. This will draw in help, this would unlock a lot of staff that want to help.. Because if nothing changes for us Then what will you do? Whats your plan without us.
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