With businesses in lockdown Wales facing serious difficulties and proprietors expressing raw emotion as a consequence of financial devastation, Janet Finch-Saunders MS, Chairman of the Cross Party Group on Small Shops, has hit out at the Welsh Government for unfair treatment of businesses.
The Chairman’s criticism follows delays in opening the Local Lockdown Business Fund, and the Welsh Government strong arming businesses to join a union. On 25 September 2020 Ken Skates MS, Minister for Economy, Transport, and North Wales wrote to business owners claiming that:
- All employers should see trade unions as partners;
- And that “When accepting the grant you were expected to align with the ethos and principles of the Economic Contract”.
Commenting on the Welsh Government’ request that businesses join a union, the Chairman said:
“Businesses across lockdown Wales are in the midst of a financial crisis. For example, in my own town some in the hospitality and retail sector have fallen to taking as little as £6.50 a day, whilst others are closed in the hope of reaching next spring.
“This economic crisis has been caused by Welsh Government’s regulations, and so it is imperative that they provide support which is proportionate to the damage being caused.
“Instead of focusing and getting on with delivering the Local Lockdown Business Fund, Ken Skates as really slipped up.
“In pursuit of creating a socialist utopia he has selfishly issued a letter encouraging businesses to cooperate with unions. At this time of crisis the best action employers can take to support employees is to work to try to save jobs. That is only possible if proportionate support is given by the Welsh Government and the economic lockdown lifted”.
- Letter from the Minister
(Photo - Betws y Coed pre-Covid)