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Strike Ballot Over Coventry Children's Centre Closures

Friday, August 11, 2017


Our members feel that they not been listened to and they are left felling angry and upset - their only recourse is to now look at taking industrial action.

GMB, the union for council workers, is balloting members for strike action over Coventry City Council’s plan to close 14 children’s centres with the loss of up to 100 jobs.

GMB approached the council to start talks to try and work towards a resolution.

Unfortunately, the union has now confirmed that the talks have ended without reaching an agreed way forward.

Coventry City Council has concluded a consultation with staff and unions on proposed changes to how the authority delivers children’s services.

Much of the detail of the proposed changes has not yet been communicated, but the proposals include plans to close 14 centres and create four family hubs; ending of all council run nursery provision, changes to job roles, up to 100 plus job losses of front line staff, but the introduction of 10 new chief officer management posts.

Justine Jones, GMB Organiser, said:

“GMB and the staff working in children’s services have continued to highlight issues and concerns throughout the consultation period, but the council has failed to address these.

“The council even served notice on all nursery workers before the consultation had finished.

“The consultation may have ended, but we still have major concerns.

“We don’t have the information we’ve requested to understand or respond to the proposals.

“We don’t know how the service can operate effectively and deliver on safeguarding the most vulnerable children in Coventry.

“On a practical level, we don’t even know if any workers will TUPE transfer to new nursery providers or even when the new providers will take over.

“GMB members are committed to providing the best possible support for the children and families of Coventry.

“However, they have huge concerns about the council’s proposals and the future of their service.

“Our members feel that they not been listened to and they are left felling angry and upset.Their only recourse is to now look at taking industrial action.”

Stuart Richards, GMB Senior Organiser, added:

Children’s services across the country are facing a mounting crisis.

“The Tories have cut of almost £500m to the Early Intervention Grant since 2013, with a further £183m drop projected by 2020.

“This amounts to a 40% cut. If we are going to retain decent public services that deliver, councils will need to listen to and work with staff and unions.

“This is why GMB offered talks with Coventry City Council. Unfortunately, these talks have not led to a resolution.

"GMB have asked that our dispute is now progressed through the agreed procedure, but the council has refused.

“This has left us with no alternative but to continue our internal process towards a ballot for industrial action.”


Contact: Stuart Richards on 07957 265744, Justine Jones on 078344 16067 or GMB Press Office on GMB Press Office on 07958 156846 or at

Previous press releases

Strike Action Looms Over Plan To Close 14 Children's Centres and Cut 100 Jobs

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

GMB members have been served their notice today - this is happening to some of the lowest paid employees of the council.

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