North Lanarkshire Council will redesign service to save £1.4m without having to shed jobs

Councillor Paul Kelly
Councillor Paul Kelly

North Lanarkshire Council will redesign its Community Learning and Development service to make £1.4m in savings without cutting 31 jobs.

Depute council leader Paul Kelly said: “We are faced with very difficult decisions because of the savings we are being forced to find as a result of budget decisions at national level.

“I’m glad we have been able to achieve that in a way which means North Lanarkshire’s investment per head of population in CLD remains the highest in Scotland.”

Under the proposals agreed by the committee, the service will now be delivered across three areas and be closely aligned with the services provided by the new Education and Families Service. Management will be reviewed, but frontline staff will be largely protected.

Councillor Kelly added: “From youth engagement to Homelink workers, CLD staff make a real difference to young people, families and adult education.

“More closely aligning them with the other services provided by Education and Families is essential to ensuring that vital support continues to be effective.

“One option would have seen enormous cuts to frontline service delivery. We were not prepared to accept that, although I absolutely recognise that reviewing service management also has an impact on our people.”

The council has consulted with trade unions and this will continue following the decision, also involving staff and service users.

Councillor Kelly said: “The option we have chosen is phased over two years. That means we can design services and changes with staff and, critically, with service users.

“I fully understand that this review – which has taken some time – has created uncertainty for staff and I believe that this outcome will reassure many of them.”

SNP group leader David Stocks tabled an amendment which called for the item to be continued for a special meeting in January, this was defeated 13 votes to 11.