Nottinghamshire social workers’ annual leave cut
Long-serving social workers at Nottinghamshire county council have had their annual leave cut by three days.
Until April of this year, staff who had worked at the council for more than 10 years were given an extra three days’ holiday. But in a bid to save £2.9m the local authority has cut the entitlement to additional leave.
The council had also planned to cut the six days’ extra leave that social workers are given as recognition that they often work unsocial hours. But the policy has been changed so that existing staff will keep the entitlement but it will not apply to new staff.
The local authority has also changed its policy on essential car user allowances, which for some were as much as £1,500 a year but have been cut and replaced with a one-off £450 payment, while mileage has dropped from 47 p to 40p a mile.
Mike Scott, Unison branch organiser, said: “What the council is saying is that it doesn’t value the loyalty shown by these members of staff.”
He added: “It is absolutely appalling. We have got people who are saying they are going to leave and work for agencies. It’s certainly having an impact on recruitment and retention. No doubt about it.”
Mick Burrows, chief executive of Nottinghamshire county council, said: “Like all local authorities, we are having to make difficult decisions with our finances to help balance the budget and meet increased demand on such services as social care, which will extend over the next few years.
“We are asking our employees to help us with this aim by accepting limited changes to their terms and conditions of employment.”
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