855 council posts under threat as second wave of job losses sweeps over public sector

by - 22nd December 2011, 8.00 GMT

The GMB says 855 local council posts are under threat as a second wave of job losses sweeps over the public sector.

The union has notice of redundancies at several local authorities in the last week, with up to 70 posts at risk in Windsor and Maidenhead, 160 posts under threat in Havering, 450 in Gateshead 16 in Harlow, 19 in Kensington and Chelsea and 140 posts in Southend.

General secretary Paul Kenny said: “We’re shocked that councils are making announcement of redundancies in the run up to Christmas. This is an appalling Christmas present for our members.

“There was an increase of 128,022 in the number of jobless in the quarter to October 2011.That means the number of jobless is rising by 1,829 every working day and 244 per every normal working hour and the pace at which jobs are being lost has speeded up with HR1 forms dropping through GMB letter boxes like confetti.

“So a double dip Osborne recession, rising unemployment, rapidly falling living standards are the Tory/Lib Dem miserable Christmas gifts to the nation. The millions of workers without jobs face a miserable Christmas and a bleak New Year.

“Instead of attacking pensions and employment rights and making it easier to sack people the government should be pursuing policies to create jobs. This is something it is failing miserably to do. Where are all the jobs that it promised -to make up for the 710,000 jobs cut in the public sector as an act of deliberate policy?  As we can now see more than half of these, 376,000, have already gone.

“This government upon election made cuts which shattered confidence and stalled the then internationally shared priorities for recovery from the banker’s recession.  It bears a heavy responsibility for the shifting of international priorities away from growth and to more economic pain.”

Research by the GMB shows 376,000 jobs have been lost across the UK in the public sector since the election.