Now is the time to prepare

HAZELWOOD employees are urged to act now to minimise the financial impact of the power plant’s closure.

Workers will walk away with a redundancy package averaging $330,000 when the power station and mine closes at the end of March next year.

Money Talk Planners certified financial planner Tony Salvatore experienced first-hand the impact the SEC’s privatisation had on workers and understands the stresses Hazelwood employees may be facing.

He said while redundancies brought with them an attractive cash enhancement, the ability to earn an income was far better than any lump sum payment.

He urged Hazelwood employees to seek financial advice from any Financial Planning Australia certificated agency to determine the best strategies to manage their financial situations in preparation for their unemployment.

“Redundancy, resignation and retirement are three R’s that weren’t taught at school,” Mr Salvatore said.

“Professional advice can take the worry out of these words and it is very important to seek advice early.”

Mr Salvatore said while the plant’s closure was still a number of months away, early implementation of individually-tailored financial strategies would minimise any unnecessary stress.

“There is no point coming in here in March… the advice is never to come the week or the month before you are to finish,” he said.

Anglicare Victoria financial counselling team leader Rachel Tobias said now was the time for workers to plan ahead.

“With our crisis service what we experience is people who haven’t had the opportunity to plan ahead, so as much as possible we want to avoid people using our crisis service,” she said.

“It’s best to start thinking about these things (finances) now.

“We encourage people to utilise the supports around them. It’s a time where there will be additional stress on families and they need to be aware of that.”

Money Talk Planners, will be hosting information sessions on preparing for a redundancy on Wednesday, 30 November.

For more information, phone the office on 5133 9533.