"The 1.25% increase in national insurance contributions, branded as the 'health and social care levy', will be met with discord, not only by employees but employers across the UK who have faced an incredibly challenging period as a result of Brexit and the pandemic. With the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme drawing to a close and labour supply presenting ongoing difficulties, many employers are struggling. Business continuity has to be a priority, with the aim of keeping people in employment. National Insurance represents a flat cost across the business, regardless of profitability and with this increase, many employers will think twice before taking on extra staff. Whilst it was always predictable that the cost of the pandemic would need to be paid for, employers certainly need a longer period of grace in order to recover from the impact of the past 18 months."