'A slap in the face for loyalty' - Clive Lewis on IKEA closure

South Norwich Labour MP Clive Lewis Photo: UK Parliament

South Norwich Labour MP Clive Lewis Photo: UK Parliament - Credit: UK Parliament

A Norfolk MP has called the loss of 39 jobs "a slap in the face for loyalty" after it was announced Ikea's Norwich Order and Collection Point will close permanently.

Clive Lewis, Labour MP for Norwich South called for more government support for low-paid workers, saying local store workers had been caught in "the eye of the storm".

The new Ikea store in Norwich. Picture: Denise Bradley

The new Ikea store in Norwich. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

He said: "I'm sorry for everyone who's losing their job.

"Many will have worked diligently throughout the pandemic as the company turned stores into distribution centres for online orders during lockdown, today's announcement will feel like a slap in the face for that loyalty.

"These local employees have found themselves in the eye of a storm hitting bricks and mortar retail hard."

The Resolution Foundation thinktank forecasts that low-paid workers are most at risk of losing jobs when furlough ends in September. 

Mr Lewis added: "My worry is this government has no strategic plan to support the recovery of employment in sectors hit hardest by Covid.

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"The support it is offering is underwhelming - including the woefully under-resourced 'restart' grant scheme.”