Small firms make rebate plea as UK loses 149 million working days to sickness

Small firms make rebate plea as UK loses 149 million working days to sickness

Responding to new Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures showing that 149.3 million working days were lost because of sickness or injury in the UK last year, with Covid-19 accounting for nearly one in four of all absences, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) Policy and Advocacy Chair Tina McKenzie said:

“The average cost of sickness absence, including finding cover, stands at more than £3,000 a year for small employers, equating to £5 billion across the small business community as a whole.

“With operating costs surging in the round, small firms need more financial assistance to go on doing right by their staff when they’re unwell.

“On the day that the Government has announced yet more help for big energy-intensive companies, we’re asking policymakers to take forward our joint proposal with the TUC for a small business sick pay rebate which will support those who have received no assistance whatsoever with utility bills.

“Allowing small community businesses to recover sick pay costs will give them that much more space to invest, recruit and retain staff, spurring our economic recovery from the grass roots up.”

About FSB
As experts in business, FSB offers members a wide range of vital business services, including advice, financial expertise, support and a powerful voice in Government. Its aim is to help smaller businesses achieve their ambitions. More information is available at You can follow us on twitter @fsb_policy.