900,000 Scots could be furloughed or lose jobs

About one in three of Scotland’s workforce — around 900,000 people — face being furloughed or made unemployed this quarter, according to a new report from think tank IPPR Scotland.

“Based on the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) UK-wide forecast, we anticipate that 750,000 employees in Scotland will be enrolled on the Jobs Retention Scheme over the next few months,” said the IPPR Scotland report.

“We anticipate a further 150,000 jobs in Scotland will be lost, as some employers fail to weather the crisis.  

“However, these job impacts will not be evenly spread across Scotland as different sectors face very different prospects …

“In retail and wholesale, Scotland’s largest employment sector outside of health, we forecast 31,500 job losses and 142,000 workers in Scotland put on furlough.

“In accommodation and food services, we can expect disruption on a similar scale: 31,000 job losses and 140,000 workers put on furlough. 

“In the health sector, by contrast, we anticipate zero job losses and an estimated 14,000 jobs created.

“Some of Scotland’s lowest paying sectors are those likely to be exposed to the most serious disruption over the coming months.

“In Scotland’s large hospitality and tourism industry … 83 per cent of workers are likely to be exposed to job losses and furlough …

“This is particularly concerning giving the prevalence of insecurity in these sectors going into this crisis, resulting from a combination of zero hours contracts, agency work and low pay …”