Sweden’s job agency fires 1,800 employees
A job centre in Boden, one of the sites slated for closure. Photo: Petra Älvstrand/TT
A total of 1,800 employees at the Swedish national agency in charge of helping job-seekers have been told they will be let go, as a result of budget cuts set to affect operations across the country.
The layoffs are not as serious as expected – earlier this year the Arbetsförmedlingen agency warned it would have to let up to a third of its workforce, or 4,500 people, go amid a major restructuring drive.
But part of the reason behind the slightly milder impact is that around 1,100 of its staff have already voluntarily chosen to quit and seek employment elsewhere in the first four months of the year.
Around 1,600 people have this week been told they will be let go, and another 200 are waiting to find out.
"It would obviously have been a lot worse if 4,500 people had had to quit," the chair of trade union ST, Fredrik Andersson, told Swedish news agency TT. "But it's a really tough situation. Many people who have been working for years are now being let go and it's very tragic for them."
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Arbetsförmedlingen originally announced the job cuts in January this year, saying it was a result of cash cuts included in both the right-wing opposition budget passed by parliament last year, but also in the new government deal between the left and centre-liberal parties.
It is currently looking at which of its job centres will havRead More – Source