Blood Cancer UK plans to cut one in four jobs due to impact of coronavirus

24 Jul 2020 News

Blood Cancer UK plans to reduce the size of its workforce by more than a quarter, its chief executive said yesterday.

Gemma Peters, CEO of Blood Cancer UK, shared details of proposals to reduce staff numbers from 120 to 87 on the charity’s website.

She said that while this is only a proposal and she will be consulting with her team about it over the next month, “it’s clear that we’ll lose a significant number of brilliant, dedicated, people”.

She also said that Blood Cancer UK is facing a £6m drop in income this year because of the cancellation of fundraising events and the economic crisis. The charity furloughed 40% of staff and cut operational costs by £2m, while also cutting its research budget by £1.8m.

Blood Cancer UK's income stood at £15.3m for the year ending in March 2019. Peters said that it may take the charity three years to get back to that.

The charity rebranded in April for the second time in five years. It was known as Bloodwise between 2015 and 2020, and Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research before that.

‘No other options’

Peters wrote on Twitter that she is “gutted” by the proposal.

She said: “I wish there had been another way, and we tried everything we could think of to avoid today. But in the end, the coronavirus has had such a big impact on our finances that there were just no other options.”

She said this is the only way to ensure the charity can keep going in the long term.

Her update reads: “If, like me, you know too many families that have been devastated by blood cancer, you’ll share my determination to do whatever it takes for our charity to emerge from the pandemic able to increase our research spending as quickly as possible.

“This determination has guided every decision contained in the proposals I presented to our staff today. I promise you that this same determination will guide everything I do in the coming months.”

Blood Cancer UK joins the long list of charities that have announced cuts to their services, research spending and workforce as a result of the crisis, including most recently Cancer Research UK, Age UK and Bowel Cancer UK.

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