PARTNERSHIP ACTION FOR CONTINUING EMPLOYMENT - 'PACE'
PACE (Partnership Action for Continuing Employment) is the Scottish Government's national strategic partnership framework for responding to redundancy situations. It ensures that local public sector agencies respond to potential and proposed large-scale redundancies as quickly and effectively as possible.
There are 21 local PACE teams in Scotland - 12 in Central and Lowland Scotland and 9 in the Highlands and Islands area. They involve local and national agencies, including Skills Development Scotland, Jobcentre Plus and Local Authorities. Other agencies, called upon as required, include: HM Revenue and Customs; the STUC and its affiliated Trade Unions; Citizens Advice Bureaux; local training providers; and further education colleges and universities.
Skills Development Scotland co-ordinates the national and local level response teams to provide tailored help and support to individuals facing redundancy and identify training activities where appropriate.
This support is tailored to meet individual needs and may include: Jobcentre Plus services; one-to-one counselling; comprehensive information packs; access to high-quality training; seminars on skills such as CV-writing and starting up a business; and access to IT facilities.
In light of the current economic climate, we have been reviewing the 'PACE offer' of help. To date, the following enhancements have been made to the existing service.
80 Skills Development Scotland staff have been dedicated to work alongside Jobcentre Plus staff to deliver seamless services between skills development and employability support to individuals in different locations, including Jobcentre Plus offices, Careers Centres and employers' premises.
A national helpline, revamped website and improved information resources were launched in February to make PACE services more accessible to individuals and employers through increased marketing and promotion. Until now, PACE has been primarily targeted at large scale redundancies. This helpline and improved website will open services to more individuals and employers in rural as well as urban areas.
A PACE Summit on 9 February brought together those involved in delivering this support to share best practice and consider how the service can be further improved. A report of the Summit has now been produced which includes a synopsis of the day and actions to take forward to further enhance the operation of PACE.