Mancot woman's home at risk after £4k pay cut

Published date: 22 January 2014 |
Published by: Robert Doman and Jamie Nield-Siddall
Read more articles by Robert Doman and Jamie Nield-Siddall


A DEDICATED nursery worker has slammed Flintshire Council after her yearly salary was slashed by £4,000.

Patricia Hughes, 58, who works for the local authority’s education department, is one of more than 1,000 workers to see their pay scales reduced as County Hall, Mold, battles to make savings of £50 million.

She has said she will also receive “a greatly reduced pension” following the introduction of the council’s new single status pay agreement – which affects 15 per cent of its 7,000 staff members.

Ms Hughes, of Willow Park, Mancot, she may be forced to sell her home as a result of the pay cut.

A nursery nurse for 36 years, she said her job “means the world to her” but admitted she was now considering taking an early retirement as a result of her loss of earnings.

“I might have to sell this place and move in with my sister in Hawarden,” she said.

“I knew there were going to be cuts. However, I thought it would be about £100 a month or something sustainable.”

Ms Hughes added: “My job means the world to me. It has been my main focus for 36 years of my life but I don’t know how I’m going to manage.”

In a letter sent to the Leader, Ms Hughes said: “My reward is that the hard-hearted councillors at County Hall intend to reduce my salary by £4,000 a year and with a greatly reduced pension.

“I have spent countless hours and expense in creating resources for schools over the years.

“I have saved Flintshire Council a lot of money over the last 36 years.”

Ms Hughes, who is paid for working a 35-hour week said: “Of course, the faceless bureaucrats at County Hall don’t see or care about the countless unpaid hours that are done.

“Covering for staff when supply teachers can’t be found, attending staff meetings often until 5pm and preparing classrooms and resources during school holidays.

“I ran an after-school sewing club for three years and also covered for cleaners, dinner ladies and Breakfast Club staff when no supplies were available, all without pay.”

Ms Hughes is not the only disgruntled worker to have been hit by the pay cuts.

Another council employee, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “I am very disappointed.

“It would appear the 50 per cent of jobs to have benefited are the top end of the job spectrum. This would mean the gap is getting bigger.

“Shouldn’t the councillors be representing their constituents because they care and not because there is a personal financial gain.

“I just feel it is all very unfair and that the general public are not aware of a lot of what is going on within the council.”

Flintshire Council has already reduced management and workforce costs by £5 million since 2008.

Flintshire Council chief executive Colin Everett told audit committee members meeting at County Hall: “A lot of people are satisfied with the outcome of the single status agreement.

“The reaction is broadly being received as we expected...the outcome has been very mature.

“People who may be worried about job security are also still pulling their weight.”

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  1. Posted by: cajg43 at 12:45 on 22 January 2014 Report

    I feel for the woman, I really do, but it's not a Flintshire initiative it's UK wide. I myself went throught this process in a neighbouring Local Authority several years ago and the same happened there with Nursery Nurses. Flintshire's only real error was taking too long to implement it!

  2. Posted by: Mr.Gobbi at 11:16 on 24 January 2014 Report

    Everett 's comment of 'a lot of people are satisfied with the outcome of the single status agreement' shows how anal retentive he is. Of course those whose salaries have stayed the same or have increased will be satisfied and for those who are having a pay cut you are paying for your colleagues pay increases. Single Status sounds good but commitment and loyalty is not part of the formula.

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