Shelter urged to reconsider redundancies

Trade union Unite has urged Shelter to enter talks about the housing charity's decision to make 33 staff redundant.

Shelter announced the cuts in non-services staff last month after amassing a £2m budget deficit.

But Unite, which represents 400 of Shelter's 800-strong workforce, said that with rising unemployment and house repossessions, the charity needed its staff more than ever.

"Shelter needs to look at innovative ways to make savings without losing jobs, especially when more and more people will be looking to Shelter for assistance in the coming 12 months," said Rachael Maskell, national officer for the community and non-profit sector at Unite. "We want to work constructively and creatively with Shelter to resolve these issues."

Maskell suggested that Shelter could move out of its central London offices to cheaper premises in order to make savings.

Adam Sampson, chief executive of Shelter, said: "We deeply regret the loss of any staff and their expertise. Contrary to claims by union representatives, we are currently consulting with staff and the union and will look to redeploy staff where we can."

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