Responding to the reports that two of the UK's largest high street retailers, John Lewis and Boots, have announced a combined cut of 5,300 jobs, Liberal Democrat Business Spokesperson Sarah Olney said:
"The scale of today’s layoffs show the true extent of the crisis facing British high streets. The Conservative Government had the chance to provide real relief for our high streets in yesterday’s summer statement, but instead the Chancellor did nothing for the vast majority of businesses outside of hospitality.
"We cannot allow the Government to forget that behind each job loss statistic lies a household struggling to make ends meet. These job losses will devastate our communities and leave families wondering how they are going to get by in the months to come.
"The coronavirus crisis has left our economy with an immense economic challenge, but the Government must rise up to it. Supporting the hospitality sector is vital, but the consequences of not helping the retail sector are already becoming clear. Rishi Sunak must expand the support for our high streets as soon as possible, before we witness thousands more losing their livelihoods overnight."