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Federation News

Updates to the Simple Energy Advice website, allowing homeowners and landlords to check how the government’s new Green Homes Grant scheme can help make their homes warmer and more energy efficient, have been launched. The Green Home Grants scheme, due to open by the end of September, will allow consumers to obtain funding for up to two-thirds of the cost of the energy saving measures identified, in the form of vouchers. Find out more here
The government has introduced a new Kickstart scheme in Great Britain, a £2 billion fund to create hundreds of thousands of high quality 6-month work placements aimed at those aged 16 to 24 who are on Universal Credit and are deemed to be at risk of long term unemployment. Funding available for each job will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus the associated employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum automatic enrolment contributions. To help smaller businesses, employers offering fewer than 30 placements will be asked to make a bid through an intermediary, such as a Local Authority or Chamber of Commerce, who will then bid for 30 or more placements as a combined bid from several...
To support businesses with employees returning to work from the Monday 15 June, the Department for Transport has developed resources for employers, which you can find here. The above sets out some steps employers can take to help provide a safe return to work for employees on the transport network, including encouraging active travel, and travel outside peak hours.
On Monday 15 June, many retailers across the country will be reopening, and the Government is keen to help welcome back shoppers and celebrate the hard work businesses and retail workers are putting in to ensure their workplaces are COVID-19 Secure. The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) is encouraging business owners and shop workers to take photos in front of their ‘open’ sign next week and post these on their social media channels as part of the #OpenForBusiness Campaign. To support the campaign, please do the following: Take a photo of yourself in front of your reopening business, preferably in front of an ‘Open’ sign Post the picture on your social media channels Use #openforbusiness Tag the Department for...
As highlighted last week, please note the following deadlines for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme - especially the deadline of yesterday (10 June), which is the final date by which an employer can furlough an employee to complete the full three-week furlough cycle. • The scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June. From this point onwards, employers will only be able to furlough employees that they have furloughed for a full three-week period prior to 30 June.• This means that the final date by which an employer can furlough an employee for the first time will be the 10 June (today), in order for the current three-week furlough period to be completed by 30 June. Employers will have until 31 July to make any claims in respect of...
The Business Secretary confirmed yesterday evening (Tuesday 9 June) that shops in England selling non-essential goods will be able to reopen from Monday 15 June, thanks to continuing progress in meeting our 5 tests. High street retailers and department stores, including book shops, electronics retailers, tailors, auction houses, photography studios, indoor markets, and shops selling clothes, shoes and toys, will be allowed to open their doors again provided they follow the COVID-19 secure guidelines set out by the government in May. Employers should also display a notice visibly in their shop windows or outside their store to show their employees, customers and other visitors that they have followed this guidance. The downloadable sign...
Below is a reminder of the key changes and deadlines you need to be aware of for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme:• From 1 July, employers can bring back to work employees that have previously been furloughed for any amount of time and any shift pattern, while still being able to claim CJRS grant for their normal hours not worked. When claiming the CJRS grant for furloughed hours employers will need to report and claim for a minimum period of a week.• The scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June. From this point onwards, employers will only be able to furlough employees that they have furloughed for a full 3 week period prior to 30 June.• This means that the final date by which an employer can furlough an employee for the first...
Trade Credit Insurance, which provides essential cover to hundreds of thousands of business-to-business transactions, will receive up to £10 billion of government guarantees. The Trade Credit Reinsurance scheme, which has been agreed following extensive discussions with the insurance sector, will see the vast majority of Trade Credit Insurance coverage maintained across the UK. The guarantees will support supply chains and help businesses during the coronavirus pandemic to trade with confidence, safe in the knowledge that they will be protected if a customer defaults or delays on payment. The scheme is available on a temporary basis for nine months, backdated to 1 April 2020, and available to insurers operating in the UK market. Read the...
As per the Transport Secretary's announcement in yesterday's press conference, wearing face coverings on public transport will be mandatory in England from Monday 15 June. Key points to note:• The new guidance refers to face coverings - not surgical masks - which you can easily make at home.• Exemptions will be made for very young children, the disabled and those with breathing difficulties. • You can be refused travel if you don’t comply and could be fined. Alongside transport operators, this will be enforced by the British Transport Police, as necessary. Transport Secretary's full statement here Further guidance will follow in the coming days, which we will circulate.
Update for 1st June – as mentioned in the Government update on Friday, the Coronavirus FAQs page has been updated with additional information on social distancing from yesterday (1st June 2020): More information here Also, note that BEIS continue to deliver free working safely webinars for businesses: This week's webinars are:- Tuesday 2 June: 11am: Offices & contact centres- Tuesday 2 June: 3pm: Other people's homes Finally, government social media channels continue to share examples of businesses that have reopened safely. see below for some examples of businesses, explaining how they are ensuring safe working: Vistry Group, Kent, South East: Construction (House building)More information Bott Ltd, Bude, South West: Manufacturing More...
Following the PM update yesterday on the UK's progress against each of the five tests we had to meet before adjusting the lockdown. Full details of this statement can be found here From Monday 1st June1) Nurseries and other early years settings and reception, year one and year six in primary schools will reopen in a safe way; 2) Outdoor retail and car showrooms, where social distancing is generally easier, will reopen; and 3) Up to six people will be able to meet outside (in parks, gardens and other private outdoor space) - provided those from different households continue strictly to observe social distancing rules by staying two metres apart. Please note that those who have been asked to shield themselves should continue to do so....
As per the Health and Social Care Secretary's statement yesterday afternoon, the government has announced that the new NHS Test and Trace service will be launched today (Thursday 28th May) across England. From today (28/5/20), anyone who tests positive for coronavirus will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and will need to share information about their recent interactions. This could include household members, people with whom they have been in direct contact, or within 2 metres for more than 15 minutes. Click here for test and trace workplace guidance…. People identified as having been in close contact with someone who has a positive test must stay at home for 14 days, even if they do not have symptoms, to stop unknowingly spreading the...
The Prime Minister set out a timeline for retail to reopen from 1st June and further guidance has been published for how to operate safely to protect staff and customers. Full details of the announcement can be found here Guidance for reopening can be found here Key details to note:• Outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen from 1 June, as soon as they are able to meet the COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers. As with garden centres, the risk of transmission of the virus is lower in these outdoor and more open spaces. Car showrooms often have significant outdoor space and it is generally easier to apply social distancing.• All other non-essential retail including shops selling clothes, shoes, toys,...
The recently announced Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will go live from 26th May, when a new online service will be launched for small and medium-sized employers - with fewer than 250 employees - to recover Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) payments they have made to their employees. Employers will receive repayments at the relevant rate of SSP that they have paid to current or former employees for eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March 2020. Full guidance can be found here
Eligibility details for the Future Fund, which was set up to provide government loans to UK-based companies ranging from £125,000 to £5 million, subject to at least equal match funding from private investors, has been updated. Please note that applications for the Fund will open on Wednesday 20 May 2020.
The government will invest up to £93 million to accelerate construction of the new Vaccines Manufacturing and Innovation Centre (VMIC) which, when completed, will have capacity to produce enough vaccine doses to serve the entire UK population in as little as six months. The funding will ensure the centre opens in Summer 2021, a full 12 months ahead of schedule. More Information.
The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will repay employers the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) paid to current or former employees. The repayment will cover up to 2 weeks starting from the first qualifying day of sickness, if an employee is unable to work because they either: - Have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms;- Cannot work because they are self-isolating because someone they live with has symptoms; or- Are shielding and have a letter from the NHS or a GP telling them to stay at home for at least 12 weeks. The online service you’ll use to reclaim SSP is not available yet. HMRC will announce when the service is available and the guidance linked above will be updated.
From today, everyone in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland who is showing coronavirus symptoms is eligible to book a swab test to find out if they have the virus.
The UK Chief Medical Officers have today released a statement saying that individuals will need to self-isolate immediately if they develop a new continuous cough or fever or, as of today, anosmia. Anosmia is the loss of or a change in the normal sense of smell. It can also affect the sense of taste as the two are closely linked. More information.  
As people are starting to return to work, we have created a Safer Transport toolkit for stakeholders to share to help inform the public on the necessary steps they should be taking to stay safe when they travel using any form of transport.  
The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme went live yesterday so self-employed individuals or members of partnerships whose business has been adversely affected by coronavirus can apply for a grant worth 80% of their average monthly trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500, paid in a single instalment. You can check eligibility here  
An explanation of how holiday entitlement and pay operate during the coronavirus pandemic, where it differs from the standard holiday entitlement and pay guidance. This guidance applies to those that have continued to work as well as those that have been furloughed.  
The government will temporarily guarantee business-to-business transactions currently supported by Trade Credit Insurance, ensuring the majority of insurance coverage will be maintained across the market. This will support supply chains and help businesses to trade with confidence as they can trust that they will be protected if a customer defaults on payment.  
Further details of the five new ministerial-led taskforces that have been set up to develop plans for how and when closed sectors can reopen safely, following publication of the UK’s roadmap to rebuild Britain.  
The Chancellor has announced that the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until the end of October.Full details of the announcement can be found here Key details to note:• Furloughed workers across the UK will continue to receive 80% of their current salary, up to £2,500.• From August, furloughed workers will be able to return to work part-time with employers being asked to pay a percentage towards the salaries of their furloughed staff.• The employer payments will substitute the contribution HMG is currently making, ensuring that staff continue to receive 80% of their salary, up to £2,500 a month.Further details on implementation will be made available by the end of the month.   There is also helpful new guidance on...
In his address to the nation yesterday, the PM outlined a roadmap for reopening society. Full details of the address can be found here Further details of the recovery strategy, which you can find here In addition, please read the following guidance, which the Government has published today to support the above strategy:- Updated social distancing guidelines read more- Guidance on making and wearing face coverings read...
Due to COVID-19 restrictions we are compelled to host the 2020 Annual General Meeting remotely via conference call. Therefore, we are informing members that the Annual General Meeting conference will be held on Wednesday 27th May 2020 commencing at 9:30 am prompt. May we ask that any member wishing to join the AGM call to inform us at your earliest opportunity via email to: [email protected] or by telephone: 0161 432 8754 no later than 22nd May 2020 to allow adequate time to circulate relevant correspondence and instruction on joining the conference call……more info.. 2020 Balance sheet:A copy of the FWC 2019 Annual Accounts & Balance sheet can be downloaded from the members only page of our website, or by email request to...
This week HMRC will start contacting customers who may be eligible for the new Self-Employment Income Support Scheme. The scheme will allow customers to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their average trading profits up to a maximum of £7,500, equivalent to three months’ profits. Customers can claim if they’re a self-employed individual, or a member of a business partnership, their business has been adversely impacted by coronavirus. Customers can check eligibility using the self-employed checker tool here  
Tax credits customers will continue to receive payments even if working fewer hours or furloughed due to COVID-19. Please find further details here and circulate amongst your employees here  
To support eligible businesses in England to access the small business grants, BEIS have created a toolkit with regional graphics and messaging. A new discretionary fund has also been announced, which will help small businesses with ongoing fixed property related costs. Please find further details here   Businesses can check eligibility using the financial support checker tool...
The Bounce Back Loan scheme is now open for applications. Key details: • Businesses can borrow between £2,000 and £50,000.• The government will guarantee 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months.• Loan terms will be up to 6 years.• The government will work with lenders to agree a low rate of interest for the remaining period of the loan.• The scheme will be delivered through a network of accredited lenders   Details on how to apply are here
Government announcement 28th April 2020 on coronavirus testing, including who is eligible for a test, how to get tested and the different types of test available. Anyone in England with coronavirus symptoms who either has to leave home to go to work or is aged 65 and over will now also be able to get tested. One of the most challenging things about coronavirus is the uncertainty: not knowing who has the infection or when it’s safe to return to normal life. Good-quality testing can help provide us with greater certainty. It’s a big part of how we’re going to defeat this disease.   As part of the government’s 5-pillar strategy for coronavirus testing, we are testing people who have coronavirus-like symptoms to see if they currently have the...
Today DfE have launched the Skills Toolkit a new online platform giving people easy access to free, high-quality digital and numeracy courses to help them build up their skills, progress in work and boost their job prospects. The Skills Toolkit allows adults to access free, high quality online courses whilst at home. This will enable them to build new skills and help boost growth and productivity. The Skills Toolkit is available to everyone and consists of digital and numeracy courses, ranging from basic to more advanced levels. These are skills that are sought after for many types of jobs, with 82% of job vacancies...
Yesterday the Chancellor announced a new loan scheme - the Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan - to help small and medium-sized businesses affected by coronavirus.• The scheme will go live from Monday 4th May 2020 and cash will be released within days for eligible businesses. • Businesses can borrow between £2,000 and £50,000.• The government will guarantee 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months.• Loan terms will be up to 6 years. • The government will work with lenders to agree a low rate of interest for the remaining period of the loan.• The scheme will be delivered through a network of accredited lenders.Press Notice - hereFurther guidance - here
Coronavirus (COVID-19) – HSE Stakeholder Bulletin 23 April 2020 HSE aims to share the most useful and current information from HSE and, where appropriate, other parts of government. You can tell us what else you might like to see by completing a brief survey. Read more here
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is now open for applications 10 days ahead of schedule. Employers can now go online to claim cash grants worth up to 80% of wages, capped at £2,500 a month per worker. 5000 HMRC staff will operate the scheme, which is expected to help thousands of firms across the UK. All of the details can be found here and you can retweet this tweet from HMRC....Read...
Normally known for their vacuum cleaners (most famously the Henry vac), Numatic have urgently re-tasked Research & Development Teams, Production Specialists and Manufacturing Teams to work across projects in support of the response to the COVID-19 crisis. The Numatic Teams have been working around the clock to provide support to the Government and the NHS, including the development and provision of face masks, face shields and free loan of cleaning equipment for NHS cleaners. Read more
Latest Government update 17th April At yesterday's press conference the government announced a continuation of the social distancing guidelines for at least a further three weeks (until 7 May). Today, the Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced that the government-backed loan scheme for large businesses affected by coronavirus has been expanded to cover all viable firms…Read more
Update on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme Confirmation of what should form the basis for furlough pay for employees furloughed on return from (maternity/paternity/shared parental/adoption/sick/parental bereavement) leave; ….Read more
Call for the Government to draft in window-cleaners to fight Coronavirus The nation’s window-cleaners should be employed in a nationwide rolling programme of sanitisation to fight the Coronavirus, according to the Federation of Window Cleaners (FWC)…..Read More
Who can claim? Any entity with a UK payroll can apply, including businesses, charities, recruitment agencies and public authorities…More help and information here.
Update from HM Government Cabinet Office Friday 3rd April 2020 The Government has taken further action to support firms affected by the coronavirus crisis by bolstering business interruption loans for small businesses and announcing a new scheme for larger companies. Extended Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) The Government has extended the CBILS so that all viable small businesses affected by COVID-19, and not just those unable to secure regular commercial financing, will now be eligible should they need finance to keep operating during this difficult time....
Now that the government's business support packages are live; they ask what more they can do to support businesses to take up these offers of support. More information here HMRC are delivering a programme of webinars on measures to support employers, employees and the self-employed through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19. You can watch a video of the first recorded webinar and register for future webinars using the link here.
Temporary arrangements have been put in place, to provide DBS checks and fast-track emergency checks of the Adults’ and Children’s Barred Lists free-of-charge.More information.
Workers who have not taken all of their statutory annual leave entitlement due to COVID-19 will now be able to carry it over into the next 2 leave years, under measures introduced by Business Secretary Alok Sharma. More information.
Private sector to private sector business is expected to dramatically slow down; however, should there be an economic downturn, it is almost certain that the Government will invest heavily in the public sector to kickstart a revival and boost economic growth within the country. To fully maximise the value of your sales force, now is the perfect time for your organisation to be proactively analysing and identifying where the opportunities will sit within the public sector in the 6 to 12 months ahead. NEW Tender opportunities are published regularly on the Members Only page.
Further to the Chancellor's announcement regarding support for those that are self-employed, we are making sure you have access to the details of the support scheme. Self-employment Income Support Scheme: more information FAQs relating to the scheme can be found here:
Confirmation that Government advice on tradespeople working alone and those providing community services can continue. More information click here
Since last week the Chancellor has set out a package of measures to support businesses through the disruption caused by COVID-19. The chancellor also announced that the self-employed who have Income Tax Self-Assessment, payments due on the 31 July 2020 will have until the 31 January 2021 to make their payments. See more here
The Federation of Window Cleaners are lobbying the Government for the benefit of the industry through the British Cleaning Council, and we are represented by FWC Executive Member Paul Thrupp - the BCC Chairman. Click here to read more about this

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The Federation was established in 1947 as an independent, non-profit making organisation to support the needs of window cleaners in the UK. Owned by and run only for the benefit of our members. Our purpose is to maintain and improve the window cleaning industry and to represent our membership, updating our image in line with the unrivalled federation that we have become today and in turn we continue to re evaluate the service offering we supply to our membership.

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