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Sussex-based cat charity sheds 80 staff
A Sussex-based animal charity could shed up to a sixth of its workforce in a cost cutting exercise.
Cats Protection has announced it is planning to make about 80 staff redundant in a bid to save £2 million a year.
The charity, based in Chelwood Gate, near Haywards Heath, has blamed the state of the economy for the dramatic move.
It is currently undergoing a 30-day consultation which will end on October 19 and is seeking suggestions from staff and volunteers on the best way to achieve the necessary ongoing cost savings.
The charity said any plans would aim to protect its cat work and minimise redundancies as far as possible.
It was founded in 1927 and has grown to become the UK’s leading feline welfare charity, helping about 235,000 cats and kittens every year through a network of more than 260 volunteer-run branches, 29 adoption centres and their homing centre in Sussex.
The charity, which currently employs about 500 people, also has an adoption centre in Hailsham and district branches covering Lewes, Worthing, Mid Sussex, Horsham, Hastings, Crawley and Chichester.
Savings Cats Protection also has charity shops in Chichester, Worthing and Hastings.
The charity said over the last few years it had implemented a series of cost reduction exercises at its head office, adoption centres and across its branch network.
Despite substantial savings and a modest increase in income, it has not matched the sustained high levels of inflation in the economy.
A spokesman said: “With the prospect of only very limited growth in our key income streams in the future, this has left the trustees and directors of the charity with no choice but to consider a programme of redundancies.
“It appears that most commentators expect the current dire economic conditions to continue for some time to come.
“For that reason it is vital that we restructure our organisation as far as possible to maintain a sustainable operation in the face of these recessionary conditions.
“Our priority must be to do everything we can to sustain the level of work we do to help cats in the UK and to continue managing the organisation effectively.”