Interesting Press Release from R3: Memorandum of Understanding on redundancy and information sharing amongst relevant agencies

The Association of Business Recovery Professionals (R3) has issued an interesting press release on a memorandum of understanding entitled, "Government and Insolvency Trade Body sign agreement to help people facing redundancy." The release notes:

"Jobcentre Plus, the Insolvency Trade Body, R3 and the Insolvency Service have joined forces to develop a system to share information about possible job losses in struggling companies, helping to ensure that people threatened with redundancy are offered support quickly and efficiently.

The organisations signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 22nd October 2009 detailing how they will work together to share intelligence and knowledge, providing even better access to support, information and advice for anyone facing redundancy.

The Memorandum outlines how Insolvency Practitioners dealing with struggling businesses will work with Jobcentre Plus offices to develop a tailor-made plan for each situation. This will help to ensure that those affected by redundancy will be given rapid access to information and services that will help them claim benefits, identify new job opportunities or get access to training.

Jobcentre Plus’s Rapid Response Service is already offering its specialised help to large and small organisations and has helped over 2,500 organisations since it was re-launched in November. However, working more closely with R3 and the Insolvency Service will enable Jobcentre Plus to help more companies, more quickly so that people who have lost their jobs find new roles or training courses as quickly as possible.

Welcoming the agreement, Employment Minister, Jim Knight MP, said:

“It is important that we don’t just wait for someone to lose their job before we start to help them. The pre-redundancy service Jobcentre Plus offers has helped thousands of people get new jobs quickly – stopping a short term difficulty becoming a long term problem.

“It is essential that we work with R3 and the Insolvency Service to make sure even more people get help before they are out of work. I am hugely grateful to Phil Wilson and R3 in facilitating this agreement.”

The agreement has been developed by Jobcentre Plus, R3, The Insolvency Service and Sedgefield MP Phil Wilson, who set out practical steps each organisation could take to help employees when they face redundancy and strengthen their relationship.

Phil Wilson MP said: “I saw first hand in my constituency the need for Jobcentre Plus, administrators and the Insolvency Service to join up and help workers who are being made redundant. People in this situation are often confused and lack confidence in what to do next. Thanks to this memorandum, the Insolvency Practitioners will be able to signpost people towards the professional help offered by Jobcentre Plus. It is an excellent step forward and I would like to congratulate the work R3 and Jobcentre Plus have put in to getting this far.”

Peter Sargent, President of R3 commented:

“R3 welcomes the opportunity to be involved in helping to develop links between our members and local Jobcentre Plus offices. We know that the impact of redundancy on people can be devastating and we want to make sure that we do everything we can to lessen that”.

The agreement will be signed by Jim Knight MP, Minister for the Department for Work and Pensions, Ian Lucas MP, Minister for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, Phil Wilson MP for Sedgefield, Peter Sargent, President of R3, Stephen Speed the Chief Executive of the Insolvency Service and Sue Veszpremi, Head of Employer Engagement at Jobcentre Plus.

Speaking ahead of the signing, Ian Lucas MP, Minster for the Department for Business, Innovations and Skills said:

“In these difficult times it’s important that Government works with the insolvency profession to help people cope with the effects of redundancy and get back into work as soon as possible. This memorandum is an important part of that process and builds on the work the Government has already done to help workers and families cope with the economic downturn.”

The signing took place at the R3 Head Offices, 8th Floor, 120 Aldersgate St, London, EC1A 4JQ on the 22nd October 2009 at 8.00 am."

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