CIPR calls for more support for Independent Practitioners
In the Budget statement on 8 March 2017, the Chancellor Philip Hammond set out measures that will impact on self employment, including:
- A rise in National Insurance contributions for the self-employed from 9% (currently) to 10% (from April 2018) and to 11% in 2019
- A reduction in tax-free dividend allowances for directors and shareholders from £5k to £2k, with effect from April 2018
According to the CIPR’s State of the Profession survey, independent practitioners account for about a fifth of public relations practice in the UK and they are part of a wider freelance sector that contributed £119 billion to the UK economy last year. Their entrepreneurial spirit should be applauded. They take on considerable risks, not having a guaranteed regular income, paid holiday, sick leave, workplace training budgets or access to statutory maternity and paternity schemes.
The rise in National Insurance contributions for the self-employed and the reduction in tax-free dividend allowances for directors and shareholders announced in the budget could pour cold water on an important part of the economy. There should be more support and encouragement for freelancers, such as the increase in what they are entitled to from the basic state pension.
Notes to editors
About the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR)Founded in 1948, the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) is the Royal Chartered professional body for public relations practitioners in the UK and overseas. The CIPR is the largest membership organisation for PR practitioners outside of North America. By size of turnover and number of individually registered members, we are the leading representative body for the PR profession and industry in Europe.
The CIPR advances professionalism in public relations by making its members accountable to their employers and the public through a code of conduct and searchable public register, setting standards through training, qualifications, awards and the production of best practice and skills guidance, facilitating Continuing Professional Development (CPD), and awarding Chartered Public Relations Practitioner status (Chart.PR).