Three mayors in northern cities have published a joint statement claiming the north “is not divided” and that they are all together in a “fight for what’s right”.
Andy Burnham of Greater Manchester, Steve Rotherham of Liverpool City Region, and Jamie Driscoll of North Tyne shared the message of unity on Friday amid reports that the region was split and self-interested with regards to the tier debate.
Greater Manchester continues to refuse Tier 3 restrictions, whereas other parts of the north have complied.
But the three leaders claim they are “all united” for the same reason: They want an 80% furlough scheme for people under lockdown “wherever they are in the country.”
The statement reads: “Paying two-thirds of salaries will not be enough to protect the jobs of thousands – it should at least match the 80% that was available under furlough, with the minimum wage as the minimum support.
“The Universal Credit top up is not the answer. It doesn’t help everybody and takes weeks to come through. It will not prevent severe hardship for thousands of low-paid workers before Christmas.”
It continues: “But we won’t forget the self-employed and freelancers and other businesses who will be affected by these lockdowns, they also need support and we stand firm for those too.”
Elsewhere in the north Lancashire has agreed to move into Tier 3 this morning (16 October).
The conversations between Greater Manchester and the government continue.