Birmingham plans 700 job cuts over the next decade as part of its business transformation plan, which is hoped to save£625m by 2017.
Unison said the losses were a “major concern” and that the government was failing to recognise the role the public sector could play in the recession.
Ken Bell, Unison’s spokesman for the north, said: “We are trying to open up the debate about the role of the public sector in getting us through the recession.
"In the north-east, the public sector is a massive part of the region’s economy and we are concerned that the government has failed to grasp the scale of job losses.”
The latest cuts follow confirmation of a 4.2% grant increase for councils in 2009-10.