The Northern Ireland Engagement Forum was established by the Department for the Economy. It is chaired by the Labour Relations Agency and comprises the Confederation of British Industry, Chambers of Commerce, Federation of Small Businesses NI, Institute of Directors, Manufacturing NI, NI Retail Consortium, the Northern Ireland Committee of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, SOLACE, the Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI), the Labour Relations Agency and the Public Health Agency.
The Forum advises the NI Executive on how best to manage the challenges Covid-19 places on NI businesses and workers.
The Forum has produced A Practical Guide to Making Workplaces Safer which has been approved by the NI Executive and is now available to support organisations and workers across Northern Ireland to take appropriate measures to keep everyone safe. We have also produced a Working from Home guide for those who are in that situation.
As Coronavirus in Northern Ireland continues, It is important that businesses and workers know what their rights and responsibilities are when it comes to protecting staff and themselves from the spread of the virus.
This document provides some key facts about the CJRS, information about how to access the scheme, and some sample templates. It is updated as more information becomes available. Please check that you are working to the most recent version.
This document provides guidance on how to manage regular or long-term working from home, which has been a requirement for many during the Covid pandemic, and may continue for some workers for the foreseeable future.
In line with existing public health advice and the Agency’s consequent decision to halt all face-to-face contact between staff and service users it has been necessary to rethink the practical arrangements governing delivery of a number of the Agency’s services including the Employer-Led (Non-ET) Conciliation Service.
Workplace Information Service
The Workplace Information Service, which provides information to employers and employees about employment matters – this service is available by telephoning 03300 555 300, or visit the information pages on this site.
Early conciliation and employer-led conciliation
Further information on these services, and how to access them, is available here. These services will not, however, be delivered face to face.
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Given the ongoing threat to public health posed by Covid-19 (Coronavirus), we have regrettably had to make a number of changes to the services provided by the Labour Relations Agency.
These changes are to protect the health and wellbeing of our staff and their families, and our customers. We also want to ensure that we continue to deliver those services that are of most importance to our customers at this critical time.
Therefore, the Agency will be conducting no face to face meetings with customers. We will endeavour to hold meetings by alternative means such as video conferencing or teleconference. Our staff will, in general, be working remotely and our offices are closed to visitors.
This means that our arbitration, independent appeals and mediation services are suspended for the time being – scheduled hearings and meetings are cancelled and will be rearranged when circumstances allow. No new bookings for these services will be accepted until further notice. Our programme of public and in-company seminars and workshops has also been postponed for the time being.
At this time we believe our approach to the threat is proportionate, but this may change depending on public health advice and the impact of the virus on our staff.
All Agency staff can continue to be contacted via email or via our main telephone number 03300 552 220.
About the Labour Relations Agency
We provide an impartial and confidential employment relations service to those engaged in industry, commerce and the public services. Our services include the provision of advice on good employment practices and assistance with the development and implementation of employment policies and procedures. We are also active in resolving disputes through our conciliation, mediation and arbitration services.