For immediate release
Here We Go Again: Government Reorganization Lacks Detail
Ottawa, February 23, 2005 - "Today's Budget announced savings in the public service of $11 billion over five years, including $1 billion in the reduction or elimination of government programs, yet details remain murky," said Michèle Demers, President of the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada. "The lack of specific detail creates apprehension amongst public service employees - will their jobs be affected, will their jobs be cut, will they have to relocate or retrain? These are valid questions our members need answered without delay".
"We encourage innovative changes to allow public service professionals to do their best work and improve the delivery of service to Canadians. But the people who deliver the services have not been consulted on yet another round of change facing the public service. Clearly, the federal government is fulfilling its electoral promises on the back of the public service and without any consideration for the "human" impact of these decisions. To achieve these savings, the government must rely on its workforce, but today's message is far from encouraging for employees as they face months and even years of employment uncertainty.
We will defend our members' right to be treated with fairness and respect through this next round of reorganization and change", added Michèle Demers. Departments must engage us in meaningful discussion to ensure that the impact on employees is minimized. In the 1995 Program Review, the Institute successfully established a substitution program where employees in positions declared surplus who did not want to leave the public service could switch jobs with those who were not declared surplus and wanted to take advantage of the early departures/retirement incentives. "We will seek creative solutions to make sure members are not adversely affected by the government reorganization," said Ms. Demers.
The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada is a national union representing 50,000 professionals and scientists across Canada.