"The current government is in the habit of either cutting jobs or relocating them. In both cases, workers and their families are marginalized, and local economies are damaged."
Charlottetown (31 July 2012) - The Prince Edward Island Union of Public Sector Employees (PEI UPSE/NUPGE) is telling the provinces' Liberal government that relocating workers at the Agriculture Insurance Corporation (AIC) from Charlottetown to Kensington will come with a cost. The AIC employs 44 PEI UPSE members and the union does not support government's decision to relocate the workers.
Karen Jackson, the interim President of PEI UPSE says “The government's strategy to create new economic opportunities in rural areas should not come at the expense of other communities. The current government is in the habit of either cutting jobs or relocating them. In both cases, workers and their families are marginalized, and local economies are damaged. Government is neglecting real job creation in Prince Edward Island.”
“Many of the permanent and casual employees affected by the relocation live in Charlottetown or east of Charlottetown. They are well established in the community and have families. Why does government feel it must make their lives more difficult? Why does government feel that in order to help one community it must hurt another?”
Jackson says that "Government did not consult with the union about the plan to relocate the workers. Instead, an information style meeting was held with PEI UPSE one day before the announcement was made."
"At a time of fiscal restraint, why does government continue to waste tax dollars which would be better spent on education, health care and improving public services? I think Islanders may be concerned about the costs associated with the relocation of the AIC. These costs have not been made public. For instance, we have no idea how much it will cost to renovate the Potato Services Building in Kensington in preparation for the arrival of the AIC."
The union will meet with the AIC workers in the coming weeks to discuss the issue and review their rights under the collective agreement.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE