Jobs to go in Scotland as leading charity restructures

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RNIB launched a volunteer drive in Scotland last year 

​RNIB Scotland is to lose jobs as part of a UK-wide restructure 

14th February 2017 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

Jobs are at risk in Scotland after the RNIB announced a UK-wide restructuring.

An estimated 200 jobs will be shed, out of a total workforce of 2,600, as a result of a proposed merger between the RNIB and Action for Blind People.

Ten posts in Scotland are now at risk at the leading sight loss charity with a consultation underway to determine the exact number of job losses as well as what roles are to be made redundant.   

Since 2014 Action for Blind People has operated wholly as a subsidiary of RNIB, but has kept its own branding. Then in 2015, 438 employees from RNIB were transferred to Action for Blind People.

The transfer, which was hugely controversial in Scotland, involved every member of staff in Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland, as well as a small number of employees working in England. 

Sally Harvey, chief executive of RNIB, said: "RNIB has opened a consultation with staff until 20 March, proposing new organisation structures and roles to transform our group of charities.

“The changes we are proposing are shaped by our customers as well as the need for many thousands more people affected by sight loss to receive timely information, advice and support. We also plan to simplify our group structure and Action for Blind People will merge into RNIB as one charity working under the RNIB name.

The changes we are proposing are shaped by our customers - Sally Harvey

“Like any charity we have to make careful decisions to ensure our long-term sustainability. These are challenging times and we have to keep a careful watch of where we are spending our money to make the most of the resources we have.

“Sadly, as part of these changes to the way we work, there may be job losses. In Scotland, fewer than 10 roles are at risk and we are working closely with the unions to ensure that job losses are minimal and that people are redeployed where appropriate.”

Unite, the UK’s biggest trade union, confirmed 200 jobs are at risk in the proposed merger.  

Mike Eatwell, regional officer at Unite, said: “There is currently a consultation arising from a reorganisation at the RNIB. We understand that there is a potential of 200 jobs at risk. However, the expectation is that, through redeployment and non-replacement, the actual number of redundancies should be significantly less than that figure.

“Unite will be giving our members maximum support during this stressful time and working very hard to reduce the number of jobs under threat during the consultation period.”