Northern Irish Barnardos May Face Staff Cuts

Barnardos – the leading lifeline charity for children – is facing its own staffing crisis in Northern Ireland in the mouth of Christmas.

Around 40 staff could be facing redundancy if the charity’s share from the shrinking allocation for the Childrens Fund is lost.

The organisation, which employs 500 full and part-time staff, is set to issue 90-day redundancy notices.

Last night the charity’s NI Director, Lynda Wilson, appealed to the Stormont Executive to give a greater priority to children and young people’s services.

While Barnardos is attempting to plug the gap with funding from other sources, it could be facing a shortfall of up to £1m.

Ms Wilson made no comment on the likely level of job losses but senior sources confirmed it could mean just over 40 full-time jobs.

“We understand that this has been a difficult and tight financial budget but the reality is that we spend considerably less on family and children’s services than other parts of the UK,” she said.

Barnardos runs 11 services under the Children’s Fund Programme, from disabled children and those who have experienced domestic violence to support for parents.

“These are not additional services but are vital and necessary elements of mainstream services for children and their families and are developed… with locally based children’s services planning,” a spokesperson added.