Co-op to cut staff hours

STAFF hours are to be radically cut in Stornoway’s Co-op store on Macaulay Road in a move which is the equivalent of the loss of around 24 full-time jobs.

The company say the move is the result of a national review of staffing levels and will ensure the same level of service across their UK network.

A spokesperson said: “We have conducted a review of staffing levels at our stores, including Macaulay Road in Stornoway, to introduce fairer and more consistent standards across The Co-operative estate.  This includes introducing a more accurate way of determining the optimum number of working hours required to run each store, while maintaining the same level of service across all our outlets. 

“Unfortunately, this means a reduction in the total number of working hours at a number of stores, including Macaulay Road. We are now in discussions with colleagues to discuss the impact of this and how it will be implemented.

“The reduction in hours at Macaulay Road is equivalent to around 24 full-time members of staff. Should there be any redundancies, every effort will be made to redeploy anyone affected within The Co-operative, or to help them find alternative employment.”

Western Isles MSP Alasdair Allan, has reacted with concern to the news and has contacted the firm to ask them if they will consider the impact this is likely to have on the fragile island economy.

Dr Allan commented:

 “My understanding is that the Co-op intends to reduce staff hours in Stornoway by around 1000 hours a week. If confirmed this would mean the loss of around 24 full-time equivalent jobs. However, as the Co-op employs many of its staff on a part basis the reality is that a great many more individuals and families are likely to be affected.

“Obviously this is bad news for the island and represents a real blow for many families. I have therefore asked the Co-op if they will meet me to discuss this issue and to provide any reassurances they can about the future of these jobs.”