Employers of people in civil service jobs should offer assistance programmes for staff that are struggling with debt, according to one organisation.

Charles Cotton, the performance and reward adviser at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), said that workers can be educated in how to manage their money during difficult economic times.

He believes that this is the solution for companies that cannot afford to give employees a pay rise at a time when food prices and the cost of living have both grown.

His comments come after the Consumer Credit Counselling Service warned earlier this week that around half of the people it counselled last year said that unemployment or reduced income were the reasons behind their debt problem.

Mr Cotton added that an employee assistance programme can help with not only financial issues, but also personal concerns.

“They will be able to give financial education and advice and information on what employers can do to reduce their debt or manage their debt more effectively,” he said.