Union urges BBC News to consider alternative to job cuts

The National Union of Journalists has voiced concern that the latest round of job cuts at BBC News will place undue stress on the staff who stay.

BBC News confirmed yesterday that it was looking to make a further 90 job cuts in year three of a five-year cost-saving plan.

The cuts are reported to be focused on newsgathering, economics, business, multimedia and political programmes

The NUJ responded this morning, urging the BBC to find other ways of making the necessary savings other than job cuts.

The union said it feared the cuts would impact on quality and would bring up health and safety problems for the reduced workforce who stay on.

General secretary Jeremy Dear said: “We understand the BBC has savings targets to reach but we are concerned the burden is falling so heavily on staff.

“We will be pressing the BBC to maximise redeployment and retraining opportunities to avoid compulsory redundancies and prioritising addressing workload and stress issues for staff who stay.”

The union has said it will have more detailed talks with the corporation in the coming weeks before a national level meeting in mid-June.

The BBC said in a statement that the cuts were part of a “tough, but entirely necessary process”.

“The BBC is continuing to work hard to minimise compulsory redundancies against a backdrop of the most severe economic climate in the UK, with thousands of redundancies being announced every week in major companies,” the broadcaster said.

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