Jobs cut fears at Linkage Community Trust as consultation over redundancies begins

Jobs threat at Linkage Community Trust.
Jobs threat at Linkage Community Trust.

Around 80 jobs are under threat at Linkage Community Trust as the charity tries to save £1.3 million.

The Lincolnshire-based learning disability charity has begun consultation with staff members on the future of up to 80 posts after challenging financial changes to its operations, it has said.

In a statement, the learning disability trust said: “Linkage Community Trust continues to face increased financial challenges resulting from a change in the demands for places within our education services.

This has been caused by almost five years of limited fee increases, reflecting the economic pressures on commissioning authorities.”

Changes to student referrals made to Linkage Colleges and a fall in student numbers for residential accommodation at College campuses at Grimsby and Toynton All Saints, near Spilsby, are major factors in the changes, whilst the figures for day learners continue to rise, the organisation have said. Consequently, fewer care staff are required to support residential students.”

Chief Executive Ges Roulstone said: “As a result, Linkage needs to make £1.3 million in savings in the next year and this will need to be achieved by redundancies affecting a maximum of 80 posts out of our workforce of around 800. The announcement starts a 30-day consultation period, during which time we will also look to offer redeployment where possible”.

He added: “In the meantime, Linkage continues to pursue new initiatives and grow the business around Lincoln, Leicestershire and Staffordshire, as we also seek to maintain services in Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire.”

“We deeply regret the need for redundancies and have tried to avoid this situation, but Linkage is also facing up to changes to the operating environment, which continues to be difficult for charities across the UK,” he added.

It is unclear yet how many post are to be affected at the Toynton All Saints campus, near Spilsby however letters have been sent out to all staff and the 30-day consultation will begin tomorrow (Thursday, May 15).

Communications and PR manager at the Toynton All Saints campus Tony Barker said: “The situation is unfortunate, but, with 38 year’s in the business, markets do change. The residential market is not as strong and the government is pushing for localisation in services to disable people.”