Shops will be able to stay open until 10 pm six days a week to turbocharge the high street and help the economy recover.
Robert Jenrick announced that from April 12, extended daily opening hours will be introduced when non-essential retail reopens its doors.
The Communities Secretary said this would further ensure the safe reopening of non-essential shops by giving people greater flexibility to dodge peak times and reducing transport pressures, and a news outlet said that our high streets and town centres are the core of our communities.
Yet over the last year, they’ve mostly fallen silent, with many of our cherished high streets struggling as lockdown and social distancing measures have taken their toll, and that’s why they’re set to do everything they can to support the safe reopening of shopping areas as they carefully move out of lockdown.
And as part of the £56million ‘Welcome Back’ fund, Mr Jenrick is encouraging councils to continue supporting social distancing measures and easing planning rules where possible.
The Government is also extending flexible working hours on construction sites, allowing food deliveries to supermarkets over more time periods, and keeping the flexibility for pubs and restaurants to erect marquees to help increase the seating capacity in a COVID secure way.
The arrangements will continue until June 21, when lockdown is expected to end, although this could be extended.
Of course, we will then see people shopping like fools, spending their money.
And what’s wrong with this government? Because if people are required to work these shifts, then they should be getting paid for it, and they clearly should be getting more than the minimum wage for working unsociable hours.
And working these extra hours will unavoidably cause a few more night crimes.
Of course, these shops are not being made to stay open, but if the shops do choose to stay open, they have to remember that their employees aren’t slaves, and I’m sure there are loads of people who could do with the extra money.
But more importantly, what shops will stay open, there are barely any left to reopen, and the retail sector has been impacted by numerous job losses, and are those shops going to be able to afford staff to cover the extra hours?
What the government should be doing is reducing the rents charged by the greedy commercial property multi-millionaire rentiers, but that’s never going to happen.
And we’re heading backwards pretty fast. It will be 12-hour shifts 6-7 days a week with no sick pay.
Rents and mortgages, in general, are now causing huge debts, and people just can’t afford them anymore because wages don’t meet the prevailing cost of living. It’s just not enough, and now they’ll introduce as many zero contracts as possible and they’ll max out the hours so that they can put money back into the pocket of the wealthy.