Whopping £24million on spent on agency staff by Islington Council

Cllr Andy Hull: 'This is a late Christmas present for loan sharks'

Cllr Andy Hull: 'This is a late Christmas present for loan sharks' - Credit: Archant

The town hall has been slammed for spending a massive £24million on agency staff.

A report delivered to an Islington Council Policy and Performance Scrutiny Committee meeting on Monday shows spending has jumped from £20.7million in the 12 months to October last year to £23.9million this year.

That’s an increase of 15.6 per cent, despite the council pledging to tackle the “unacceptably high level” of agency staff in May.

Cllr Caroline Russell, Islington Council’s opposition Green party member, said: “The worst thing is some of these staff are doing jobs that are supposed to be brought in house, but are being kept on agency terms.

“That means they can be let go at a moment’s notice and puts them in an incredibly precarious position.

“For a council that professes to be on people’s side, it seems very wrong they have agency staff for jobs that are supposed to benefit form public sector employment protection.”

Cllr Andy Hull, Islington Council’s executive member for finance, said the town hall has been working hard since they made the pledge to reduce agency staff, including speaking to trade unions and redeploying at risk staff.

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He added: “A great deal is being done, despite fierce market headwinds, to reduce the council’s reliance on agency staff.

“That said, the graph of overall expenditure on agency staff is not yet heading in the right direction, and I have made clear to the council’s senior management that it now must.”