Union will lobby Calderdale Cabinet Meeting on Wednesday 30th November to oppose proposed changes to carers’ terms and conditions.
GMB, the union for foster carers, will demonstrate outside Halifax Town Hall in anger at proposed zero hours contracts for foster carers.
The protest will take place on Wednesday, 30th November from 5pm, when the Council’s full cabinet meet to rubber-stamp detrimental changes to the terms and conditions of foster carers across Calderdale Council.
The changes, which are being forced through, will mean foster carers having to work to a zero hours’ contract offering little or no financial security between child placements and a reduction to their annual leave entitlement.
Calderdale Council has repeatedly expressed that these proposals are essential in order for them to be able to recruit new foster carers, but a recent survey of UK foster carers carried out by GMB has highlighted increasing levels of insecurity and dissatisfaction at the way local authorities manage their fostering service.
This has resulted in a mass exodus of foster carers from the service and a national crisis in recruitment.
Rachel Harrison, GMB organiser, said: “We are calling on Calderdale Councillors to support foster carers at the council meeting on the 30th November and to reject these proposals.
“The Government has recognised that the fostering system needs to change and has commissioned an inquiry into fostering.”
“We would request that Calderdale Council put these proposals on hold, at least until the outcome of this inquiry.
“Any changes to be made should be done with full and meaningful consultation with existing foster carers.
“They should be listened to seriously. They have the best interests of the children at heart; happy foster carers are the best recruitment tool that any council could wish for.”
Disappointingly, anyone taking up the role of foster carer at Calderdale Council will already be subjected to the new terms and conditions.
Notes to editors
For further comment contact Rachel Harrison on 07539-061702, Rachel Dix on 07958-156839 or Caroline Jones on 07850-325283 or 0345 337 7777