Cornwall Council – Staff and Sickness

Again at Cabinet Meetings you get a lot of statistics in the monthly reports. It’s good to know some of these facts, but sometimes you have a memory over-load in just trying to read and make sense of them all. As everyone in this Country knows, there are going to be some massive cuts, especially in local Government. The trick is how do you manage these cuts without affecting services.

Currently at Cornwall Council there are 19,970 people employed across the board. There are also 1,374 vacant positions with only 109 of these being advertised. Now it looks on paper that one way to implement cuts is to reduce the amount of staff. This looks all fine and dandy on paper, but what about those staff left? They have to take up the slack from those missing positions.

This in turn can lead to an even greater problem. You find that the staff become over-worked by picking up the slack. They then can go off sick with various illnesses like stress. Currently sickness is a problem at Cornwall Council and one that the senior management say they are addressing.

On one of the reports on targets it lists sickness this is taken from April – July 2010. Click HERE for the report. The report lists days off per staff. These figures are not just for this period, but what they would be over the entire year. It gives an indicator of how things are proceeding. The current figures are by Directorate the figures are: ACS 4.35 days, EPE 2.71 days, CSF business units 2.36 days, Communities 1.71 days, CE 1.41 days, Schools 1.37 days, Resources 1.32 days.

I do worry that not having the right number of staff in positions will lead to a poorer service. I understand the need only have the right number of staff and not pay for someone to sit around, but I do really fear that we are not covering ourselves with the right staffing levels.

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