Twelve jobs face axe at Brighton Housing Trust after funding cut From The Argus
The Brighton Housing Trust’s Advice Centre has been hit by changes to the way that legal advice on immigration, welfare benefits and debt work is funded.
It is expected that income for legal cases this year will plummet from 1.5 million to 987,
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The changes, which involve merging its serves with the Immigration Legal Services which are both based in Community Base in Queens Road,
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Andy Winter, chief executive of BHT, said that 12 jobs will be cut over the next year with some changes happening within the next three months.
He said the housing trust continues to receive funding from Brighton and Hove City Council so it can give advice to residents in the city,
Mr Winter said: “It has been on the cards for a couple of years that we would have to downsize our advice and legal services.
Support “We received a 55% cut in legal aid funding for our work in Brighton and Hove, allowing us now to take on just 590 cases each year.
“We knowhowimportant this service is, and we are extremely grateful to councillors of all parties in the city who have protected and even increased their financial support to ensure we can continue to keep this service going.
“Of course I am very sad to see the loss of up to twelve dedicated and skilled members of staff but we have no option.
“BHT will continue to employ sixteen advisers, solicitors and support staff in the service.”
Mr Winter added that BHT will retain the capacity to see through cases, so that existing clients will continue to receive a service.
He said: “The BHT Board has reaffirmed its support for this work by agreeing to invest up to 100,000 of our charitable funds to deliver this part of our charitable objectives.
“We will continue to rely on the financial support of members of the public and I am renewing our appeal for people to make regular donations to the Brighton Advice Centre.”