Jobs at risk in probation service merger?

PROBATION services in Suffolk and Norfolk today announced they are to merge their operation.

PROBATION services in Suffolk and Norfolk today announced they are to merge - and job cuts have not been ruled out.

The move comes as all Probation Boards in England and Wales must apply to become Probation Trusts by 1 April 2010 and bosses in Norfolk and Suffolk decided the best bet for achieving trust status was by submitting a joint application.

If the application is successful the new organisation will be given licence to deliver probation services in the two counties with effect from April 2010.

It is not clear at this stage whether there will be any job cuts as a result, but frontline operational jobs will be protected as much as possible.

John Budd, Chief Officer for the Suffolk Probation Service, said: “Building a new organisation will be both challenging and exciting.

“We are focused on being an excellent provider of probation services for the victims, courts, communities and offenders of Norfolk and Suffolk.”

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“In the meantime we will continue to work hard to protect the public and reduce re-offending.”