Which financial services employees are classed as key workers?

Parents whose work is critical to the covid-19 response, such as workers in the financial market infrastructure, can qualify to have their children in school as part of government measures to support the economy during the covid-19 crisis

An estimated 7.1m people fall into the key workers’ category.

A key financial worker is defined as someone who provides a service which is necessary to ensure the continued functioning of financial markets.

The government has asked parents to keep their children at home and schools to remain open only for those children who absolutely need to attend, ie, the children of employees whose careers falls under the key workers’ list.

Financial institutions will have to decide which staff are essential for the provision of financial services.

To help them decide who they are, firms need to identify the activities, services or operations which would lead to disruption of the economy if they were not available.

They should also identify any critical outsource partners which are essential to continued provision of services.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has listed the types of roles that may be considered as essential financial services:

  • senior managers;
  • online services and processing;
  • customer services - those dealing with consumer queries, client money and client assets;
  • payments processing and cash distribution services;
  • facilitating corporate and retail lending and administrating the repayment of debt;
  • processing of claims and renewal of insurance;
  • trading venues;
  • risk management, compliance, audit and other functions necessary to ensure the firm meets its clients’ needs and its obligations under the regulatory system; and
  • any individual that provides essential support to allow the functioning of the above roles, such as finance and IT staff.

If workers think they fall within the critical categories above, they should confirm with their employer that their specific role is necessary for the continuation of this essential financial service.

In circumstances where the school their child attends is closed, key workers should contact their local authority, who will seek to redirect them to a local school in the area that the child, or children, can attend.

Over a fifth (22%) of all working-age individuals are in the set of key worker occupations, equating to 7.1m adults across the UK. Around 26% of all women are in these critical occupations, compared with 18% of men, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies.

‘We are grateful for the work of teachers and workers in educational settings for continuing to provide for the children of the other critical workers of our country. It is an essential part of our national effort to combat this disease’, said the Department for Education.

Journalists covering the covid-19 pandemic are also classed as key workers to ensure that coverage is maintained.

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