OTTAWA, June 27, 2012 /CNW/ - Canada's largest federal public sector
union says that 3,889 of its members in 13 departments are being told
today they could lose their jobs.
"This government is misleading Canadians when it says these cuts won't
impact services we all rely on," said PSAC's national president Robyn
Benson. "We need Stephen Harper and his Ministers to stop hiding behind
spin and start talking to all Canadians about the services we are
The union says it is frustrated at the lack of information being
provided about what these job cuts are going to mean for services.
"The departments are telling us very little about what programs and
services are being cut, and they aren't telling the public either,"
said Benson. "We worry that Canadians aren't going to know what
services and programs are being eliminated until they are gone."
Since the federal budget was tabled on March 29, 2012, 16,873 PSAC
members in 44 federal government departments and agencies have been
told they could lose their jobs.
The government can and should respond to requests from the Parliamentary
Budget Officer for information on the nature and scope of cuts to
services and programs that Canadians rely on.
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada: HRSDC is hardest hit, with 1,964 PSAC members being told today they
could lose their jobs, adding to the 1,022 PSAC members in that
department who received notices in April. Of those receiving notices
today about 1,450 work for Service Canada. Very little information has
been provided to PSAC's component, the Canada Employment and
Immigration Union, about what programs are being cut or how services to
the public will be affected. Cuts to Service Canada are especially
troubling as it is impossible that frontline services won't be affected
with the jobs of so many of its 23,000 employees in question.
As per changes announced in the budget bill around the appeals process
for the Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security and Employment Insurance,
it is anticipated that all the PSAC members working in the Office of
the Commissioner of Review Tribunals, Pension Appeals Board, the EI
Board of Referees and the EI Office of the Umpire are among those
receiving notices today. These changes are seriously compromising
access to fair appeals for more vulnerable Canadians, including people
with disabilities, seniors and the unemployed.
Canada Revenue Agency: 671 PSAC members who work at the CRA are being told today they could
lose their jobs. The agency has told PSAC's component, the Union of
Taxation Employees, that 399 of these positions will be eliminated. It
appears that frontline public services are being hit hard, with the
closure of all cash and enquiry counters providing in-person services.
The public will now have to navigate the CRA's website or wait in a
phone queue for service. 20 jobs are being eliminated at the National
Forms Call Centre in Winnipeg which means fewer employees will be
available to respond to questions. Enforcement work is being
consolidated, meaning some workers are being relocated. The
consolidation of management positions means some administration support
staff positions are being eliminated. The agency has told the union
that no Tax Service Offices or Tax Centres are closing at this time.
Department of Justice: 483 PSAC members are being told they could lose their jobs in the
Department of Justice today, adding to 35 members who were served
notices in April. It isn't known how many positions are being
eliminated. PSAC's component, the Union of Solicitor General Employees,
is concerned that many communications and information workers appear to
be affected, which will mean less people available to answer queries
from the public. Library services workers also seem to be among those
affected, raising concerns about the department's library system.
Records management workers who handle ATIP requests are also affected,
which may affect the department's capacity to respond to requests.
Department of National Defence: 299 PSAC members at DND are being told they could lose their jobs,
adding to the 1,124 who received notices in April.
Department of Transport: 147 PSAC members at Transport Canada are being told they could lose
their jobs, adding to the 213 workers who received notices in April.
Out of today's notices, 107 positions are being eliminated. Notices are
going to all regional Health and Safety Advisors who were recently
hired to help bring the department into compliance with federal Health
and Safety legislation. Notices are also going to 12 technical
inspectors responsible for marine safety and security, one automotive
inspection technologist and a civil aviation airworthiness inspector
who works with the top five commercial airlines operating in Canada.
Other notices are going to communication specialists and administrative
Department of Fisheries and Oceans: 97 PSAC members at DFO are being told today that they could lose their
jobs, adding to the 598 who received notices in April. The Department
of Fisheries and Oceans will substantially reduce the number of Habitat
Offices where there is a Habitat Program. Offices that stay open will
no longer have Habitat employees; however, functions related to
fisheries will remain at these offices. The Habitat Program will move
to a more centralized delivery by consolidating the program into 15
locations as opposed to its current 63.
Canada School of Public Service: 72 PSAC members are receiving notices today, out of which 35 positions
will be eliminated. Most of the surplus notices are in the Corporate
Management and Registration Services Branch and some are within the
Strategic Directions, Program Development and Marketing Branch.
Overall, the cuts are affecting the ability of the school to provide
information to managers for strategic purposes and long-term planning.
Public Works and Government Services Canada: At PWGSC, 60 PSAC members are receiving notices today saying they could
lose their jobs. The department says that 45 of those positions will be
outright eliminated. These numbers are in addition to 87 PSAC members
who received notices in April. Many of the reductions are the result of
the creation of Shared Services Canada: PWGSC is refocusing its
remaining IT staff on providing support inside the department instead
of providing support to other departments. Budget cuts in other
departments have also meant cancellation of MOUs with PWSGC, leading to
cuts of jobs that existed to support programs that have been cut.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada: 57 PSAC members are being told they could lose their jobs, adding to
the 459 members in this department who received notices in April. All
of the positions affected today are located in the National Capital
Notices are also being distributed at Environment Canada today, where 23 members who work in Montreal's Biosphere are being told
they could lose their jobs; nine members were handed notices at Infrastructure Canada, six at Correctional Services Canada, and one member is affected at the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.
For further information:
Shelina Merani, PSAC Communications: (613) 293-9324