Layla Moran MP writes: Why we need a Coronavirus Compensation Scheme

Last week, I launched a petition calling on the Government to implement a Coronavirus Compensation scheme, to protect the families of all frontline workers should the worst happen. I need your help to make it happen.

During this crisis, the message to all of us has been repeated over and over: where possible, stay at home. But it isn’t possible for everyone.

The NHS, for instance, isn’t a faceless organisation. It is made up of many members of our community, our neighbours and our friends. In times of crisis, our society relies even more heavily on essential workers, such as doctors, carers, food suppliers and teachers, to name but a few.

All of these essential workers are now putting their lives at risk to protect others. And, similar to those in our armed forces, they should know that if the worst happens the state will help their loved ones.

I believe a scheme similar to the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme should be put in place to protect the families of frontline workers, should the worst happen. In addition to pension benefits, it would include:

A lump sum upfront
A guaranteed income for their family
Child payments to eligible children under 18

At the time of writing, over 2600 people have backed the petition, calling for the safety net our front line staff and their families deserve. Yesterday, 50 cross-party MPs added their support, in a letter calling on the Prime Minister to introduce the Scheme.

I believe we should reach out and spread the message that we need to support our heroes on the front lines of this crisis. No money could ever compensate for any loss of life, but this scheme would provide security and comfort for those risking themselves at this time of crisis.

As Lib Dems, our sense of community and our shared values are our strength. I know our sense of gratitude to the frontline workers is limitless. So please help us show it, by adding your name to the petition for this compassionate Compensation Scheme today.

* Layla Moran is the Liberal Democrat MP for Oxford West and Abingdon

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5 Comments

  • John Littler 1st Apr '20 - 7:23am

    The government’s loans to support business are turning into an exploitative means of banks taking people’s property, by impossibly long delays before loan arrives, 30% interest rates set by the so called approved lenders and by requirement to back the loan with commercial property or Director’s own homes. This is despite the government also underpinning the loan.

    I recall this sort of thing by the lying Nat West/RBS from the financial crisis of 2007-8, which took Brown and business to the cleaners. They were telling businesses not to apply for loans as they would not get them, as they did to me. At the same time they took tens of billions from the government on the condition that they continued to maintain the same level of borrowing and ended up telling Brown there was “NO DEMAND”.

    Rachel Reeves MP raised the issue today on BBC R4’s “Today Programme”

    100’s of thousands of small to medium sized firms are severely at risk of going down and the banks just want to use the situation to take their property, supported by a manipulable government scheme.

  • Tony Harris 1st Apr '20 - 8:17am

    A lot of these measures are already part of the standard NHS pension scheme (death in service) https://www.nhsbsa.nhs.uk/sites/default/files/2018-05/Survivors%20Guide%20%28V8%29%20%28print%20version%29%2005.2018.pdf but I agree that workers not covered should be supported. Note that after two years NHS pension payments become taxable at 45% which is reprehensible. This should definitely be changed.

  • John Marriott 1st Apr '20 - 9:35am

    Compensation can be defined as something, usually money, awarded to people for suffering or loss etc. I would say that the ‘compensation’ for our present arrangements could be defined as actually remaining alive! I agree that those helping us to survive this threat, be they citizens, organisation or businesses large and small, by their contributions should not be allowed to go to the wall now or when it is all thankfully over.

    Therefore, as this really is a world problem, would it not be possible to ‘compensate’ us all by a massive writing off of debt and our just starting all over again with hopefully lessons learned?

  • Let’s just remember that it is not just health workers who making sacrifices for the greater good. Ordinary people, with very little chance, of dying or even becoming seriously ill from this virus are giving up their livelihoods, liberty, absorbing strains on their physical and mental health, social lives, family connections and financial stability. Some of them are living in flats, bedsits, hostels, and so on. This is for a virus that as of March 19 2020 is officially no longer considered a high consequence infectious disease (HCID)

  • The idea initially seems to be a good one. It does need careful consideration and I’m tending towards it being a Covid-19 related scheme only as your title suggests. It is arguable that supermarket workers are in the front line too, though to a slightly lesser extent than nurses.

    Death in the line of duty is literally an occupational hazard for many people. Perhaps there is a special category for circumstances beyond the normal line of duty but who is able and willing to define that?

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