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Furloughed employees should do training

14 April 2020

THE GOVERNMENT has updated its guidance for employers who have 'furloughed' employees under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Of particular interest to health and safety professionals is the confirmation that 'furloughed employees should be encouraged to undertake training.'

When staff are safe and well at home but unable to do their job, it provides a unique opportunity for them to upskill or renew existing qualifications.

Most PASMA training courses, as you'd expect, involve getting hands-on with scaffold towers under the watchful eye of an instructor. However, each course also includes a classroom-based theory session.

In response to government restrictions, and having asked its network of approved training centres to suspend face-to-face training, PASMA has created online versions of these theory sessions, drawing on the expertise of their eLearning Developer, Sakina Bokary. The sessions cover all the same content as the classroom-based versions usually do and are delivered by experienced instructor, Chris Smith.

The sessions allow people to get a head-start on a PASMA qualification from the safety of their home. When training centres re-open, they'll only have the the written assessment and practical session left to do. If they complete this successfully, they'll earn their PASMA Card.

If the delegate already holds a PASMA Card that is due to expire, PASMA is offering 90-day extensions for those who complete an online theory session.

Karen O'Neill, PASMA's head of training administration & delivery had this to say, "We wanted to do something to support all those people who would normally be out and about using towers but are currently working from home or furloughed. We've pulled out all the stops to get our theory sessions online so that anyone due to renew a PASMA qualification or who's been meaning to get one can make significant progress towards that during this lockdown period."

To book a course that includes an online theory session, contact your nearest PASMA training centre: pasma.co.uk/directory/find-training-centre. So far, delegates can choose from Towers for Users, Low Level Access or Work at Height Novice, but more courses are on their way.