Birmingham Council employees to be offered voluntary redundancy
Birmingham City Council will be contacting its employees in the near future to explore the possibility of voluntary redundancies in an effort to reduce the number of people who will be forced out of their jobs.
The council is under pressure to find savings of £330million by the year 2013/14. It has issued Section 188 notices to trades unions to mark the beginning of formal consultation on redundancies. The notices cover 26,000 Birmingham non-schools employees
According to a news release, Council has a number of strategies to minimise the impact on employees and services, including a voluntary redundancy program.
Employees will be able to express an interest in leaving their jobs which does not commit either side. Some requests may be refused if they’re unaffordable to the role is critical to Council’s future plans.
Chief Executive of Birmingham City Council, Stephen Hughes said: “We appreciate this is a difficult time for all our employees and we are doing all we can to minimise the need for staff reductions on a compulsory basis. “
The voluntary redundancy program has been praised by GMB. The union’s Regional Organiser, Roger Jenkins said: “We will work together with the Council in order to avoid any compulsory job losses. The GMB sees a voluntary redundancy exercise as a positive step forward.”
But UNISON is unhappy Council is continuing with compulsory redundancies while the voluntary process is going on. The union says the voluntary process could create vacancies that could be filled by staff facing compulsory job losses.
UNISON’s West Midlands Regional Secretary Roger McKenzie said: “This latest act by Birmingham City Council again illustrates how out of touch and two faced the Council are. If the Council are serious about engaging with their staff then they should not proceed with compulsory redundancies at this stage.”