Local Liberal Democrats have welcomed the extension of the furlough scheme until Spring 2021, something the party had been calling for since August.
Harrogate & Knaresborough's MP had previously refused to support an extension to the scheme, telling those worried about job losses that they were being "alarmist".
Responding to the extension of the furlough scheme, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Spokesperson for Harrogate & Knaresborough, Judith Rogerson said:
"Liberal Democrats have been calling for an extension to the furlough scheme for months, so of course this extension is very welcome. I just wish the Government hadn’t left it until the eleventh hour, with too many people already having lost their jobs.
"Meanwhile, there are still over three million people who continue to be excluded from receiving any financial support since the beginning of the pandemic.
"The Government needs to use this second lockdown to put in place a long-term, sustainable plan. That means sorting out the track, trace and isolate system and making sure that proper support is put in place for everyone who needs it."
Councillor Geoff Webber added:
"It’s truly disappointing that Harrogate & Knaresborough’s MP didn't have the foresight to see this coming. Local people and businesses had been warning months that they needed the furlough scheme to be extended if we were to avoid job losses and business closures.
“Had our area’s MP listened to these worries, rather than dismissing them as ‘alarmist’, many jobs and livelihoods could have been protected."