Thousands of people have come together to sign an online petition to prevent Members of Parliament from receiving £10,000 each as a ‘work-from-home’ allowance.
The £10,000 work-from-home fund was made accessible for MPs to claim, helping them to support themselves and their staff, as well as any additional office costs as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic.
However, a petition on Change.org aimed at stopping this additional allowance has already gained over 254,000 signatures, 46,000 away from its target of 300,000.
Conservative Councillor James Doyle of Sunderland City Council has spoken to us regarding this matter, he said:
“Personally, I know a number of MPs whose offices and working practices have been totally upended to accommodate home working, which inevitably involves the use of personal IT equipment and phone systems.
“It would be wrong to expect MPs and, in particular, their staff to have to bear the cost of these arrangements out of their own pocket.
“Of course, allied with these altered circumstances, MPs are having to respond to an unprecedentedly high volume of casework relating to business grants, Universal Credit and all manner of unique and complex issues.”
The funding was introduced by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority and they announced it will be suspending their 90-day limit for claiming costs and becoming more lenient on MPs producing their evidence relating to their expenditure.
However, Conservative Councillor, Lewis Bartoli from North Tyneside Council was not aware of any sort of backlash. He said:
“The £10,000 work from home allowance, or its backlash, has received very little coverage and has not been mentioned by any of my constituents or colleagues.”