Hull City Council seeks volunteers for redundancies

Council memo
Image caption Council managers have been asked to encourage staff to consider voluntary redundancy

Thousands of council staff in Hull are being asked to consider voluntary redundancy as the local authority braces itself for spending cuts.

The city council said in a memo to managers the "early termination programme" was open to all 13,000 employees, apart from those in schools.

The move comes ahead of October's government spending review.

Hull City Council leader Carl Minns said he was preparing for a worst-case scenario of 25-30% cuts.

In its managers' update, the council said: "We may have to reduce our workforce to meet our financial challenges, but as a responsible employer we want to minimise compulsory redundancies.

"Approaching this in a responsible way, we are now offering all staff (except for school-based staff) the chance to express an interest in leaving through a Voluntary Early Termination programme.

"We're keen to receive expressions of interest and would like you to encourage your staff to think seriously about this opportunity."

The workforce has been given until 30 September to express an interest in voluntary redundancy.

Mr Minns said: "We cannot leave this until the new financial year because there is a consultation process we'll have to go through.

"We are being honest with our staff and saying we need to look at our staffing levels now.

"The cuts are going to be big and they're going to be deep, but the important thing is to make sure our frontline services continue."

Chris Jenkinson, of the trade union Unison, acknowledged that if jobs had to go then the council was right to assess which workers would leave voluntarily.

He said: "The key issue is, of course, how many people will leave and from which services and what that means for those services and the communities that rely on them."

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