The bottom line must rule for all employers in State
Redundancy is a tragedy but sometimes survival can be at stake, writes Emer O'Kelly
THE only certain thing for people made redundant in the past year is a savage drop in income. And whether they are employees, self-employed or contract workers at high or low level, their reactions vary from sleepless nights spent worrying about how best to utilise redundancy lump sums (if they exist), to restless days of frantic fitness regimes interspersed with slightly hopeless attempts to expand work horizons beyond what seemed so fulfilling and certain only a couple of years ago. There is also, of course, the shattering dilemma of family responsibility: people are losing their jobs while their children are still in need of full (and expensive) support.
There's also the battle to keep self-esteem intact; when you're accustomed to defining yourself 50 per cent (or even more) through your work, the mental wounds are brutal when it disappears or retracts.
Recession creates a vicious circle in the area of redundancy. Announcements of voluntary redundancy schemes look very attractive in good times as people see a future of increased leisure, maybe even an alternative career, together with what amounts to an early and often generous pension. But in good times, such offers are rare: companies need their full complement of staff.