31 January 2024

 This week’s update covers the following:

  • National Hairdressing & Beauty Federation welcomes Government T Level decision

  • Last day for self-assessment
  • Low Pay Commission announces new Chair and Commissioners
  • Protecting ‘lone workers’
  • AHT Competition
  • Campaigning for you – discussions with Labour on VAT 

National Hairdressing & Beauty Federation welcomes Government T Level decision

After much lobbying by the National Hair & Beauty Federation (NHBF) the Secretary of State for Education announced in March 2023 the decision to delay the delivery of the Hairdressing, Barbering and Beauty Therapy (HBBT) T Level to 2024. Since then, the Government has met regularly with the NHBF, hairdressing, barbering and beauty professionals and employers to discuss their skills needs, as well as with other sector representatives regarding the planned HBBT T Level.

In beauty, the sector told the government that a good quality level 3 classroom-based progression route is desirable. Therefore, the government has announced it will explore introducing a T Level which focuses on the beauty sector, with an emphasis on science, and the expectation that this could be introduced after 2025.

Read the full press release here. 


Last day for self-assessment

The deadline to submit a self-assessment tax return end today. Self-assessment returns can be completed online. They are mandatory if you’re self-employed, have a total taxable income of more than £100,000, or need to pay the High Income Child Benefit Charge. There are resources available from HMRC on how to complete a self-assessment, including video tutorials and a step-by-step guide.


Low Pay Commission announces new Chair and Commissioners

Baroness Philippa Stroud has been announced as the Chair of the Low Pay Commission (LPC). She replaces Bryan Sanderson, who has been Chair of the LPC since 2019.

Nigel Cotgrove and Andrew Goodacre have also been announced as Commissioners.

The LPC is an independent body that advises the government about the National Living Wage and the National Minimum Wage.

Read the full press release here. 


Protecting ‘lone workers’

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recently revised its guidance on protecting lone workers. The guidance is meant for both employers and the self-employed, and it explains how to keep lone workers safe and healthy. This applies to all lone workers, including salespeople and receptionists. Lone workers face a higher risk of hazards than other workers because they work alone and don't have colleagues to support them. The guidance covers how to deal with various factors, such as mental health and workplace hazards.


AHT Competition

Enter the Association of Hairdressers & Therapists (AHT) regional, national competitions and skills competitions.

Come along to their learning and development forum and presentation of awards.

All information on how to register for the competitions, attend the forum and nominate for an award can be found on the AHT website.


Campaigning for you – discussions with Labour on VAT

At a Dentons Global Advisers event held this week, Labour Party Chair and Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities, Annelise Dodds, provided comprehensive answers to a range of policy issues.

During the event, Rosina Robson, Director of Policy & Public Affairs at the NHBF asked a question about what plans a Labour Government would have for VAT reform. The NHBF has been campaigning for over 15 years, and their latest report, "Avoiding the cliff edge," models’ options around a VAT threshold smoothing mechanism to incentivise growth.

In response, Anneliese, the Shadow Treasury team member, recognised the hair and beauty sector's crucial contribution to female entrepreneurship, diversity, and well-being. Labour is exploring ways to promote economic growth and will follow up on the proposals with the Shadow Treasury team. However, there is no information on the Labour VAT policy currently available to the public.