Further Commentary

PSAC calls for transparency on service cuts as thousands more federal workers are told they could lose their jobs

Canada NewsWire

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 losing."

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.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/772460#ixzz1z7Lug8Qz