Unions fight cuts to children’s nurseries

Could you afford an £8000 pay cut?

GMB calls for unnecessary cuts to Brighton Hove City Council Childrens Nursery Services to be stopped to ensure consistency of care for City’s most vulnerable and protect predominantly female low paid workforce from draconian pay losses.

GMB and UNISON members working in Labour run Council children’s nurseries are facing one, two or three levels of cuts in latest restructure proposals with some nursery practitioners set to lose up to £8,000 or even more from their annual salaries! These are trained, qualified and experienced staff and these proposals will see those staff left undervalued for the skill and knowledge bases they have accumulated over many years dedicated service.

These are front line cuts, cuts to the salaries of those staff looking after some of the most vulnerable children in some of the most deprived areas of the City so please sign and share this petition calling for Brighton Hove City Council to cease these destructive cuts and instead find alternatives to targeting front line staffing for reaching their budget reductions.

http://www.gmb-southern.org.uk/brighton-hove-council-nurseries-petition/

Initially when staff were warned of upcoming changes they were told they would have some of their pay protected for 3 years however proposals were then delayed and a new policy for pay protection was agreed by Councillors meaning staff are now only to receive a lower level of protection. GMB are asking that if these cuts have to be made, at the very least initial promises are upheld and the 3yr pay protection is given to these staff facing such drastic and life changing cuts to their pay, the largest proposed cuts seen in many years.

The Lead Councillor for Children’s Services, Cllr Tom Bewick says that the “current workforce is very expensive when compared to the private sector” but goes on to say the administration decided to keep nurseries in public hands to ensure the high quality of service provision?! This Councillor happens to get more money in allowances than the highest paid qualified practitioners affected by these proposals earn PRIOR to the proposed cuts and he will be taking over £5000 MORE than most of the staff affected will be earning if these proposals are implemented.
He also states that “Every pound we are unnecessarily spending is money we are not spending on the children” but the GMB argue that every penny of savings in the proposals are coming from staff directly working face to face with children every day so the money currently being spent IS being spent on the children, for both their care and education from highly skilled and dedicated staff.

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