SEISS 4 time delay unacceptable

Since the Chancellor’s budget yesterday, we have received many emails and facebook posts about the length of time people are going to have to wait for the 4th SEISS grant.  We realise people are worried, and have written to the Chancellor and other Ministers to express our concern about the delay and the affect it will have on members and their families.

We suggest that you write to your own MP, I know through our facebook page that several of you have already done so.  We think that they should be made aware of the distress this is causing people, already in desperate circumstances through no fault of their own.  The length of time being quoted is not acceptable and we need to make them aware of that.  There is a suggested letter you can use here.

This is what we have written to the Chancellor, the Finance Secretary and others –

Dear Chancellor

I am writing as Chair of a leading driving instructors association in the UK, ADINJC. Whilst there was much to be thankful for in your budget yesterday, I am receiving many communications today from very worried and upset instructors due to having to wait until mid/late April to receive any further financial help. They have been unable to work since the start of this lockdown and will not be able to start work until April 12th at the earliest.

They are deeply concerned as to how they will feed their families and pay bills now as they will be waiting and trying to exist for another 7-8 weeks. They are desperately in need of this grant money sooner because their savings are depleted and they have been borrowing money from family and friends (which obviously has to be paid back), had a Bounce Back Loan (again it has to be paid back), and suffering the effects of this virus for a very long time to come.  Their immediate concern is putting food on the table now, and I am at a loss as to how the government thinks they can do that.

Not long ago, Jacob Rees-Mogg described us ‘as one of the unseen engines of the country who train future generations of drivers’.   We provide a valuable service, but we need help to get through the final stages of this pandemic in order that we can continue to provide that service.

Please, could I ask for your help in getting this grant to driving instructors who are self-employed as soon as possible? Many of them won’t be able to cope for this length of time before receiving payment.

Below are a few comments I’ve been sent today:

Can’t believe that the Government have said we can’t claim SEISS until end of April. If it is financial help for Feb-Apr do they not think we may need that money during that time, not at the end?

Why do we have to be paid in arrears we have the same bills and outgoings as others and to make us wait 3 months for money is causing a great deal of stress for people,.

Although grateful, I’m devastated to know that the fourth SEISS payment will not be paid until April, people like myself haven’t had anything since December, what are we supposed to live on, the payment was to cover February to April, I urge you to have this brought forward to an early date this month.

I like many others are now having to live on fresh air having not had a payment since 4th December 2020. It was bad enough that the payment did not arrive until the second month of the period but now having to wait until the third month is going to be a nightmare. Have we not had to endure enough hardship through no fault of our own? The only good news here is that the payment will be for 80% of trading profit.

I’ve read that we may not get the money until April which is far too long to wait when the last payment was in December!  It’s just a joke!! NOT!

Devastated to hear that the government thinks it’s acceptable for self-employed to wait until the end of April for the 4th SEISS grant.

My last payment was received 8th December. That’s almost 5 MONTHS without receiving a penny.

My business will not survive. Simple as that. It MUST be brought forward.

An ADI letter to their MP.
The self-employed are yet again being treated differently to the employed. I am enormously grateful for the help we have received from this Government, but there has to be some fairness and understanding about people’s circumstances.
As you may recall, I am a Driving Instructor, and have qualified for the SEISS grants. The third grant was claimed and received by me in December and covered the period November, December and January. We were told that a fourth grant would cover February, March and April.
That grant was to be announced in due course and sure enough it was announced in the Budget yesterday.
It has been tweaked and we can claim it from ‘late April’!
My last payment was in December. The next payment will be at the earliest after ‘late April’, so potentially May, but is for the period February, March and April.
What do they think I and all other self-employed people have been living on since December??
No payment holidays, no mortgage holidays, an unexpected National Lockdown, my Bounce Back Loan is spent, I’ve had to borrow money from a friend, and I’ve had to apply for an ARG from Kettering Borough Council, the next bit of which will repay my friend.
I’ve taken on a job working 13 hour shifts in a Covid Testing Tent, paying tax on that and bringing in the equivalent of £7.35 an hour, whilst exposing myself and my family to the risk of catching Covid.
And the Government expects me to wait until late April possible May.
Why? What is the reasoning behind the delay?
There are people who are already beyond the brink, people who will very clearly not make it emotionally, physically to May. Delays and prevarication are costing people’s lives, literally.
I urge you to use your influence to get the process for payments brought forwards, to help ease our financial, emotional and mental well-being.

This is a very real point of danger for a lot of the self-employed and their families.

Yours faithfully,

Lynne Barrie

Lynne Barrie M.A
ADINJC Chair

 

The GOV.UK link.

More details here.

And here.