Employees at the Parks Canada office in Cornwall have been left devastated by the latest in a round of job cuts.
Mario Leclerc, a Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) union representative, confirmed 38 positions have been determined surplus.
Leclerc added the news is terrible – and not surprising given his opinion of the Conservative government.
“This government is releasing updates in dribs and drabs to the public to diminish the importance and the scope of federal cuts,” Leclerc said in an e-mail exchange with this newspaper. “And what a coincidence that this government decides to release it while PSAC is holding its National Convention in Ottawa.”
One staff member said the Cornwall office is going through a “huge” layoff of permanent employees.
Leclerc said the surplus positions come from a variety of departments, from engineering to finance.
“These are high-paying jobs,” he added.
The layoffs could translate into shorter seasons at national parks and historic sites according to public service union leaders who say Parks Canada has been particularly hard hit by federal spending cuts.
Staffing cuts are massive as departments continue to roll out the details of how Ottawa will eliminate 19,200 positions in an effort to save $5.2 billion a year.
PSAC – the largest union of federal public servants – claims 3,872 of its members across 10 departments received notices Monday that they could lose their jobs.
Public servants who receive notices won’t necessarily lose their jobs. However some departments did inform workers that they have been declared “surplus,” which means their jobs are definitely being eliminated. Surplus employees can still take advantage of various programs that could help them find another federal government job.
While the job numbers still leave many questions unanswered, the totals and their locations do give a sense of what programs and services are being cut.
At Parks Canada, 1,689 PSAC members received affected notices and staff were told that 638 positions will be eliminated.