Council to axe up to 1,000 jobs

September 02 2016

UP to 1,000 jobs will be axed as Bristol City Council battles to make £29m of savings this year.


UP to 1,000 jobs will be axed as Bristol City Council battles to make £29m of savings this year.

Mayor Marvin Rees has said he has “inherited a huge financial challenge” and his only option left is to cut jobs.

The reduction of full-time roles is the equivalent of around 17 per cent of the council’s workforce.

The authority has now launched a scheme which lets staff apply for voluntary severance.

Mr Rees warned last June the council would have to make considerable savings due to Government cuts and growing demand on services.

Mr Rees said: “I have inherited a huge financial challenge which is proving bigger than we knew even a month or two ago. We continue to make savings in many ways, but we cannot close the gap without reducing the number of jobs at the council.

“This scheme is about giving people the option to leave voluntarily, which is the right thing to do. We will support staff as best we can throughout this difficult time.”

Cllr Craig Cheney, cabinet member for finance and governance, said: “This process is about fixing our financial foundations as we continue to plan for the longer term to put our resources where they are most needed. Budget proposals for next year and our new financial strategy will be consulted upon later in the year.”

Unison said the cuts could leave the council “unable to fulfil its legal duties, particularly around social care for elderly and vulnerable people”.

Steve Crawshaw, branch secretary for Unison Bristol, has called upon Mr Rees to join forces with the leaders of other core cities to ask Prime Minister Theresa May for more funding.

Any staff leaving voluntarily will finish work by the end of September. 

Further plans for the council’s budget from April 2017- April 2020 will be published in the autumn for public consultation ahead of a new medium term financial plan being put forward for consideration by councillors in February 2017.