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05 October 2018

Weekly Brief 40 - Friday 5 October 2018

A wrap of the week’s small business news from FSB’s Westminster Press, Policy and Public Affairs Office. To sign-up for Weekly Brief emails, please use this link.

Good to see Government getting serious about late payments

Reacting to Business Secretary Greg Clark's announcement of a package of measures to safeguard small firms from late payments at this week's Conservative Party Conference, FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry welcomed the move. Central government has said it will pay 90% of undisputed invoices from SMEs within five days. Mike's comments were picked-up by the Telegraph in its lead business piece on the announcement. Also this week, the Small Business Minister announced a call for evidence on the problem of late payments to small businesses, quoting FSB research. You can respond to the call for evidence here until 29 November.

Rapid pace of bank branch and cash point closures hurting small firms

FSB raised its concerns about the impacts of moves towards a cashless society following the publication of new research by the consumer group Which? on Wednesday. The latest findings provide further evidence that the current wave of bank branch and ATM closures are hitting the most vulnerable hardest. Commenting on the issue, Mike Cherry stressed that many consumers still use cash, which in turn means small firms need to be able to access bank branches and cash deposit facilities.

First Voice shortlisted for excellence award

First Voice magazine - the UK's highest circulation B2B title published by FSB - has been named as an Association Excellence Awards 2018 finalist in the best magazine category. Access the First Voice website and sign-up for regular updates here. Follow @fsb_voice on twitter for daily content.  

New immigration system must work for 5.7 million small firms

Following a speech by the Home Secretary Sajid Javid on Tuesday, FSB welcomed the confirmation that all EU citizens who are already in the UK will be able to remain in the country, no matter what sort of Brexit deal is struck. However, Mike Cherry stressed that any new skills-based immigration system must allow small firms to access all of the different talents they need to thrive - particularly in the mid-skilled space. The Financial Times covered the story in-depth, quoting FSB's reaction.  

Nominations for FSB volunteering opportunities are open

FSB online nominations have opened for both local and national volunteer opportunities. In a move towards greater democracy, FSB is holding both nominations and voting online. We are committed to increasing the diversity of business owners standing for elected office. 

Guidance for mental health in the workplace

World Mental Health day takes place on 10 October. Acas have produced guidance around helping to manage mental health in the workplace and developed a new framework for positive mental health at work, for employers, employees and line managers. The advice can be accessed here. 

Join Big Voice and make your business heard

Big Voice is FSB's unique online research community and it's free for members to join. By responding to one of our surveys, members give us the evidence we need to engage with politicians around the world on the subjects that matter to them. Join for free to make sure your voice is heard.