October sees tens of thousands laid off

This October employment declined by 54,000 full time positions. October's loss pushed the unemployment rate here in Canada up 0.2 percentage points to 7.3 per cent.

Ottawa (7 Nov. 2011) - With another global economic crisis looming, jobs and closing the growing gap between the rich and poor are of great concern to Canadians.

Federally, cuts announced throughout 2011 and over the next three years will see the loss of thousands of good jobs (numbers below as summarized by CBC):

Federal Department
Jobs numbers cut

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

42 positions

Bank of Canada

33 workers

Canadian Museum of Civilization

Eight positions

Environment Canada

776 positions

Fisheries and Oceans

275 positions

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

600 positions

Industry Canada

26 positions

National Defence

2,100 civilian positions

National Gallery of Canada

Five curators

National Research Council

52 positions

Public Works and Government Services Canada

700 staff

Treasury Board

84 jobs 

Veterans Affairs

400-500 positions


"As the trade union movement has well pointed out, it is growth and decent jobs, not austerity, which are essential to beating the crisis and putting an end to the growing inequality and poverty around the globe", said James Clancy, NUPGE National President.

Unfortunately, however, there's more to come. Tony Clement, Canada's minister of the treasury board has asked 68 departments to offer up scenarios for five and 10 per cent reductions to their bottom lines over a three-year period. Cuts itemized above are from the last round of fiscal review.

Provincial government public service jobs are also under the knife. Almost as if in anticipation of the wave of layoffs, employment fell this October in Ontario, British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

The numbers for October 2011 also tell the story of women losing their employment at a greater rate than any other group. In spite of the fact that a comparison between October 2010 and this October shows gains for women, still approximately 32,000 women, aged 25 and over were out of work this October.


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