THE true extent of local authority job losses on Wearside have been revealed in a new report.
The GMB union has released the findings of a study it conducted from the latest quarterly public sector employment survey.
It shows that at the time the Coalition Government came to power at the start of 2010, there were 13,560 people employed at Sunderland City Council.
This was down to 12,374 in the first quarter of this year, a reduction of 1,186 staff or 8.7 per cent.
The revelation comes just after Sunderland City Council announced they had been named Best Achieving Council at a national ceremony for, in part, how they avoided making compulsory redundancies.
Across the whole North East, the report says there has been a drop of 18,900 council staff or 14.6 per cent of all those employed by local authorities.
There have been 18,900 local authority job losses due to cuts across North East councils in recent years.
Tom Brennan, GMB regional secretary said: “In the UK as a whole, 424,000 jobs have been lost in the public sector, of which a total of 236,900 have been lost in local councils in England and Wales.”
Newcastle has seen a reduction of 2,719, Durham 4,146, Gateshead 2,445 and South Tyneside 1,692.
Council leader Paul Watson said: “Sunderland City Council, along with the other councils in the region has been hit hard by the Government’s funding cuts.
“A reduction in staff is an inevitable outcome of this.
“However, in Sunderland, we have approached the issue in a different way.
“The Sunderland Way of Working, including our programme of staff restructuring, minimising external recruitment, secondments and our Be Your Own Boss Scheme has helped us achieve a reduction in staff numbers without the need for mass redundancies.”