Following the decision last week of the British Union Conference (BUC) to place several of their support staff and some directors onto the Government's Job Retention Scheme, this week saw similar measures taken by both the North (NEC) and South England Conferences (SEC).
With both Conferences holding online workers' meetings this week with their respective presidents, there was an opportunity for discussion, questions and dialogue of the implications and expectations of being placed on furlough.
Following their meeting, SEC President Emmanuel Osei placed the following statement on the SEC website:
"We have held discussions with our schools, our SEC Directors, our Area Coordinators and all our pastors concerning this very matter. I am grateful to all our staff and workers for sharing their wisdom in discussing this issue.
"Because of the closure of our schools, we have decided to place all support staff and some of the teaching staff on furlough. We have retained the Headteachers and the Senior Leadership Team.
"Since our Conference office is closed due to the lockdown, we have also placed all our support staff on furlough with the exception of the media, treasury, secretariat and presidential departments.
"Finally, we have furloughed most of our interns and licensed ministers for the next two months."
See full statement here.
NEC President Richard Jackson, along with his administration will also be making similar decisions which may affect up to 50% of workers being placed on furlough. See NEC statement here
These are obviously challenging times for the Conferences that depend on a monthly return of tithes. Therefore in order to safeguard the Conferences and secure jobs in the future for the care of members, these temporary measures are deemed necessary to make at this time.
Please visit the Government website to get the full details of what can and cannot be done here.