United Way of East Central Iowa will eliminate four of its 25 staff positions, effective July 1, to face financial challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the not-for-profit’s president and CEO told The Gazette Wednesday.
Kristin Roberts said three positions within the Community Building department and one within the finance and administration department “will no longer be with United Way,” saving about $350,000 on salaries and benefits.
She said the affected employees were notified June 16.
“If you look at the community and you look at COVID-19 and the effects of what it will have on the fundraising efforts within our community, we’re just treading very lightly on that, or trying to be proactive so we can now be as nimble as possible in our organization as we move through in the coming year,” Roberts said.
“... We’re just trying to manage it as best as we can.”
Roberts said the not-for-profit is working with two community entities to carry on the work done by those from the Community Building department, but it is an opportunity to “re-imagine and focus on our future.”
She declined to name the community organizations because the talks pertaining to the positions are ongoing.
“While (United Way of East Central Iowa) may not be the lead of this work, it will continue to have a seat at the table to ensure we work toward our community goals in education, financial stability and health,” Roberts said.
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Other area organizations recently have cut staff positions as they face financial headwinds amid COVID-19.
The National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library board of directors and administration laid off three full-time staff members Friday because of a reorganization prompted by the pandemic.
And internet domain-hosting company GoDaddy informed workers Wednesday it will move 134 of its staff positions from its Hiawatha office to Arizona, seeking to create one “high energy in-office environment” instead of sustaining multiple offices.
Roberts urged people to support United Way so it can continue to address the community’s emerging needs.
“COVID-19 has brought some very uncertain times to our community and our nation,” she said. “If there was ever a time in which people’s generosity is needed, it’s right now.”
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