Children support staff face axe at Cheshire East Council in £1.2 million cuts
The future of around 140 employees is under pressure after Cheshire East Council announced it is set to redesign its children’s centres and prevention service at a scrutiny committee meeting.
Eight managers are expected to go by September, along with 21 full-time equivalent members of support staff – but with employees facing the prospect of reapplying for their jobs this summer, around 140 out of 270 members of staff are affected.
Members of the children and families overview and scrutiny committee were told that the budget cut was not the only reason for the restructure, as the council looks to refocus its children and families support service.
Early years provision and children’s centres are to be brought under one management structure, and the council hopes the reorganisation can help those teams work closer together and ensure resources are used ‘more effectively’.
Cllr Jos Saunders, cabinet member for children and families, said: “The first few years of any child’s life are critical for their development and we have a firm commitment to provide every child the best possible start.
“Restructuring our teams will allow the council to continue to focus on providing earlier intervention for all our children and families, particularly those with complex needs.
“This approach requires the service – and the professionals within it – to work differently so that we can support our local communities to improve health and wellbeing outcomes.
“By going through a full and thorough staff consultation process, we aim to make efficiency savings of £1.2 million. This proposal was consulted on as part of the council’s budget-setting process and agreed at full council last month.”
Staff were informed about the restructuring process earlier this week, before an internal consultation was launched yesterday.