Rok is leading a campaign to encourage the Government and the public to boost the repair and maintenance sector.
The Repairing Britain campaign launched by Rok could save up to 250,000 construction jobs by stimulating the refurbishment market through bringing empty homes back into use and improving existing properties.
Rok chief executive Garvis Snook said: “The effects of this recession on workers in our industry are an enormous concern. I have an abiding memory of the recession in the early 1990s when the industry lost some of the most skilled people, most of whom have never returned. We need to prevent this from recurring.
“The proposed change to VAT backed by community support of their local trades people can save up to 250,000 jobs and ensure more young people are brought into training within the industry if people follow the plan set out by ‘Repairing Britain.’
“Many people are unaware of the tax inequality that allows those building new homes to be exempt while those making improvements to existing properties are charged at 15 percent. With unemployment on the increase and a desperate need for low cost housing, Rok believes the general public should get involved.”
The ‘Repairing Britain’ campaign includes a Five Point Plan for member of the the public:
● Identify disused buildings and those in disrepair and put pressure on local councils to get them fixed and back in use
● Urge councils to use local builders for refurbishment contracts and schemes under £10,000
● Encourage local business owners to keep their buildings in good condition and raise energy efficiency
● Look at your own home to see what you can do to make it more energy efficient, or what maintenance jobs can be done now to prevent problems in future
● Sign Rok’s Downing Street e-petition for a reduction in VAT on repair work to 5%
Mr Snook said: “’Repairing Britain’ is not just about challenging the Government. The public can have a major impact in supporting an industry, which provides the foundations for this country.
'The solution to its problems is in the hands of the public and they can make a big difference by following some advice and taking community action.”
To sign the petition click here