Thousands start receiving job loss news

Thousands of social workers, school dinner ladies, meals on wheels providers, refuse collectors, home helps, youth workers and others around the country are starting to receive notice letters that they are under threat of redundancy, according to the GMB union.

Thousands of social workers, school dinner ladies, meals on wheels providers, refuse collectors, home helps, youth workers and others around the country are starting to receive notice letters that they are under threat of redundancy, according to the GMB union.

The GMB says 87,374 posts are under threat of being made redundant at 107 councils across Britain this Christmas. It says that in nearly all these councils a 90-day statutory consultation period is under way on how to deal with these job losses. It adds that councils have given notice that they plan to delete vacant posts and seek volunteers for early retirements and redundancy.  

The councils where big losses have just been announced include the London Borough of Newham where 1,200 jobs are under threat; Oxfordshire County Council where 1,000 jobs are threatened and Durham County Council where 1,600 jobs could go. Glasgow is expected to lose 3,000 jobs. The GMB has already reported huge job losses in areas such as Birmingham where 5,000 jobs are expected to go.
 
The GMB says its officers are consulting members on what they want the union to do in this unprecedented situation.

Brian Strutton, GMB National Secretary for Public Services, said: "These are not town hall pen pushers but social workers, school dinner ladies, meals on wheels providers, refuse collectors, home helps, youth workers, across the range of front line council services that are being decimated. It is the most vulnerable in our community that will suffer.

The axe is now falling indiscriminately on people who played no part in causing the deficit but are expected to lose their jobs to pay for it. The debt junkies in the banks, hedge funds and private equity houses who caused this recession have been bailed out using £850 billions of taxpayers funds while the government shamefully seeks to pass the blame onto overspending in the public sector."

Statistics only tell part of the story. Every job lost is a personal tragedy and often a family left despairing for their future. What sort of a Christmas is it going to be for the council workers under notice of redundancy? The unfilled posts deleted means there are no other jobs to go to especially in those most deprived areas where councils are the main employer. It’s all too easy to excuse the cuts as necessary – but has anyone thought, seriously thought, about the terrible human cost?"





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