UK government told to give every adult a £500 shopping voucher to help revive the economy after lockdown

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  • The government has been urged to give a £500 shopping voucher to every adult in the UK in a bid to revive the economy following the coronavirus lockdown.

    Independent think tank The Resolution Foundation, has called for Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak to consider providing the British public with £500 worth of shopping vouchers to spend on our neglected high streets.

    With retailers across the UK having re-opened last month after closing their doors in March in light of the coronavirus health crisis, the proposed £30 billion scheme could give the economy a well-needed boost.

    If taken on by the government, adults could be given the go ahead to have a £500 spend up, with children granted £250 worth of vouchers on top.

    James Smith, a research director at the Resolution Foundation, said, “While every part of the economy has been affected by the current crisis, the stand out feature of this recession is that some areas are far more affected than others.”

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    Speaking ahead of the Chancellor’s announcement about his upcoming plans to salvage the economy, he added, “Social distancing has huge implications for firms in sectors like retail, hospitality, tourism and leisure that will last into the forthcoming reopening phase.

    “That is why the jobs of so many workers in these sectors are in the firing line. The Chancellor’s recovery package on Wednesday should reflect this unique economic challenge.

    “As well as setting out the biggest ever peacetime job support programme, the Chancellor should get Britain spending in places where it’s needed most. A universal ‘High Street Voucher’ scheme – worth £500 per adult and £250 per child – to be spent only in these sectors would kickstart demand in the right parts of our economy, boost living standards and deliver targeted support to the businesses that need help the most.

    “The Chancellor has already shown that big, bold measures like the Job Retention Scheme are welcome and necessary in the current economic climate. He should take this same approach as we enter the crucial recovery phase of the crisis.”