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Failure to extend furlough will be seen as "seminal moment" on path to independence, says Adam Price

Adam Price (Image: Mark Hawkins/Barcroft Media/Getty. (Senedd Collage: Gwalia)

Adam Price has said that the UK Treasury's refusal to extend furlough pay when the national firebreak lockdown was introduced in Cymru will go down in history as a "seminal moment" on the path to independence.

In October 2020, the First Minister Mark Drakeford had written repeatedly to Chancellor Rishi Sunak requesting that the furlough pay be extended by one week to coincide with Cymru's firebreak— only to be told that it was not possible to do so due to technical reasons,

However, when it became clear that England needed to enter into lockdown, the Treasury swiftly announced that furlough pay would rise back to the previous 80% level.

At the time, the First Minister said: "When things change in England they change their minds about the furlough plan. And that's not fair,"

Despite welcoming the furlough, he added: "When we were asking it was impossible to do it. Now when they have made new decisions in England it is possible."

'Seminal moment'

Speaking to the digital magazine, the leader of Plaid Cymru said that the preferential treatment shown to England during that critical moment in the pandemic would be seen "as one of the key moments" on the country's path to independence.

Price said that you could almost "hear the sound of three million pennies dropping in people's minds in Wales" when it was announced that furlough would be extended throughout the UK only when it was needed for England.

"We realised in that one moment, in that one decision, that our lives, you know,

our lives, did not matter to the Westminster political establishment," said Price.



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