We need the whole truth about job losses and cuts at the council

First published in Comment

IN response to the convenor and chairman of Unison’s recent remarks about the £34 million-worth of cuts that will take place between 2013/15.

Once again the union representatives paint a picture of doom and gloom for the people of Bolton. If we are having facts and figures thrown at us, could the union throw some light on the following?

When the first wave of cuts was announced the union, in conjunction with the Labour group, stated that 1,500 jobs would be lost and services would be slashed and possibly lost. This was later changed to 800 job losses. How could anyone get that so wrong?

Secondly, could they give the exact numbers of jobs lost during the first level of cuts in each of the following — early retirement, non-filling of vacancies and those made redundant .

The council said that it would protect front line services and they seem to have achieved this at the same time as losing numerous posts and saving millions of pounds. I have not noticed a reduction in the level of service, so did the council need all the jobs we are led to believe were lost?

Could the council also confirm or deny that £10 million was put into the council’s reserve funds this year at the same time that libraries were closing?

The union representatives also indicate there may be forced redundancies . Can I inform them that they are in a privileged position. Those of us in small businesses face redundancy on a regular basis. The only difference is our customers can sack us at any time, unlike those employed by the council. We cannot opt out of their services and, if we try, we face court and possibly a spell in one of Her Majesty’s secure hotels.

It’s time to face reality. If there is limited finance, the council will have to cut its cloth accordingly. Welcome to the real world.

Bryan Griffith Springfield Road Bolton

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