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Barnet Social Care Cuts

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

20 Social care staff in Barnet face cuts in pay and jobs and new work rosters as outsourced service pays price for bad policy.

An undermining of the value of the service they provide will not only impact on their terms and conditions but on the quality of service they provide says GMB.

Around 120 staff employed in the outsourced social care sector in Barnet face job losses, new work rosters involving weekend working and cuts to pay and conditions of employment in new proposals put forward by employer Your Choice Barnet.

Your Choice Barnet is the service providing day services, respite care and supported living for adults with special needs. It was the first of the One Barnet programmes that was outsourced a year ago.

Your Choice Barnet has now opened consultation on these massive changes cuts to staff and their terms and conditions. This comes just 12 months after a TUPE transfer from the council. See notes to editors for timetable. The changes are due to be implemented by July 1st.

Around 80 of the 120 are support workers or assistant support workers who are most likely to be affected. Also the number of team leaders are being reduced from 16.8 to 5.3 which is reduction of just over 11 posts.

Keith Williams GMB regional officer, said “The grading of many support workers is to be downgraded to assistant support workers resulting in a loss of pay. For around 10 staff pay cuts are so severe they could result in a loss of £7000 per annum.

If this was not enough they are also looking to force staff to work 7 days a week with no enhancements for working weekends. A the same time they will be reviewing the pay of all workers as they claim they are paid more than other workers in this sector.

The reality is that although support workers elsewhere get minimum wage, well below London Living Wage, Your Choice staff are getting little more than the London Living Wage. Although support workers everywhere do a thankless job, the quality of service is far better in Your Choice than many private services due to the staff being well trained and valued.

An undermining of the value of the service they provide will not only impact on their terms and conditions but on the quality of service they provide. A reduction in salaries to those earned working on a checkout will see a loss in valuable well qualified and quality staff. This will impact on the services users and viability of the service.

These proposals come about due to Your Choice Barnet not achieving the increase in revenue outlined in their Business case. This was a concern the GMB raised throughout the project. Our members and users of the service are now paying the price for Barnet choosing to become a "commissioning council."

This is the first of the One Barnet projects to fail to make the savings predicted. Although a vital service for many residents in Barnet in financial terms it is small. With two much larger contracts on the horizon the prospects for the wallets of Barnet residents and quality of services provided to them does not look good".

End

Contact: Keith Williams 07710 631 339. GMB Press Office 07921 289 880

Notes to editors

Proposed time table for the cuts

Issue consultation document to Staff and trade unions 1 March 2013

Consultation meeting with trade unions 28 February 2013

Consultation meetings 7,11 and 12 March 2013

Issue at risk letters w/c 4 March 2013

1-2-1 meetings for at risk staff w/c 11 March 2013

Managing Change Workshops TBC (April 2013)

Interview Skills Training TBC (May 2013)

Consultation period Ends 31 May 2013

Redeployment Interview for Service Manager post w/c 3 June 2013

Redeployment interview for Community Support co-ordinator w/c 3 June 2013

Application Process for Service manager Post TBC if redeployees unsuccessful

Application process for Community Support post TBC if redeployees unsuccessful

Interview Process for Waking Night Support Worker (Valley Way) w/c 3 June 2013

Interview Process for Support Worker (Supported Living) w/c 17 June 2013

New structure Implemented 1 July 2013

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