Council offers social care workers voluntary redundancy

All of Derbyshire Council's social care workers have been offered voluntary redundancy or early retirement in an attempt to save £84m following government spending cuts.

All of Derbyshire Council’s social care workers have been given the oppportunity to apply for voluntary redundancy or early retirement in an attempt to save £84m following government spending cuts.

A spokesperson said it was unlikely that frontline social workers would be allowed to leave but letters have been sent to the council’s 10,500 staff in children’s and adults’ services inviting them to apply.

In total, 2,000 jobs are expected to be cut across Derbyshire Council  over the next five years, a spokeswoman for the authority said.

The spokeswoman explained the plans were a knock-on effect of the funding cuts to local government announced in the comprehensive spending review.

“Everyone in children’s and adult services can apply and we would look at every application on a case by case basis but there may be some posts where it may be less likely for them to be accepted where there are particular service pressures, such as social work,” she said.

“We’re facing cuts of at least £84m over the next four years on top of £10.4m in the current year,” she added

The secretary of the Derbyshire County Unison branch, Jeanette Lloyd, was confident that the council would work with unions to ensure compulsory redundancies would be used as a last resort.

“Even if social workers apply for voluntary redundancy, there’s no guarantee they will be accepted,” she said.

Meanwhile, restructures mean 57 posts in adult services are being cut in order to save the council £1.8m, which include adult care managers and welfare rights officers. At the same time 14 new positions are being created, mainly in a brokerage service, to support people with personal budgets.

In children’s services, 18 posts face the axe but a council spokesperson said it was “too early to say” which positions would be at risk.

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