The Ottawa Citizen:
Just months after issuing notices to public servants that their jobs
were being eliminated to save money the Defence Department is looking at
paying a private firm $100 million to provide those same services,
according to DND documents obtained by the Citizen.
would cover management services, maintenance and repair and janitorial
services for army installations in western Canada, including 10 training
areas and 17 armouries.
But the proposed contract, to run from
2013 to 2018, has union leaders angry and accusing the Conservative
government and DND of using the public service layoffs as a guise for
privatizing more federal jobs.
“We were told that those jobs were
not needed and those people wouldn’t be replaced,” said John MacLennan,
national president of the Union of National Defence Employees, which
represents 19,000 workers. “The government’s program was supposedly all
about saving money so how do you save money when you cut jobs and then
turn around and spend $100 million to hire companies to do the same
The Conservative government’s plan will see the closure of
the military support units in Chilliwack, BC and Calgary, according to
the Sept. 6 briefing note prepared for Brig.-Gen. J.C.G. Juneau,
commander of Land Force Western Area. But that will have a significant
impact on the military installations those two locations support, the
note pointed out.
“The closure of Area Support Unit (ASU)
Chilliwack and ASU Calgary has severely limited the capability to
sustain the infrastructure currently supported by those units,” Juneau
The Chilliwack unit is responsible for 12 armouries,
nine training areas, one cadet camp, one naval reserve and three other
buildings. The Calgary unit is responsible for five armouries, one
training area, one naval reserve, a cadet camp, a military museum and
two other buildings.
Public service staff assigned to the
Chilliwack and Calgary units, along with some contractors, are
responsible for managing, maintaining, cleaning, and repairing the