Federal documents reveal 29,600 job cuts by 2015

May 17, 2012

OTTAWA—The total number of federal core public service job losses over the next three years will be 29,600—far more than the 19,200 estimate that is now commonly cited, says a new analysis by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA).

The analysis, by CCPA Senior Economist David Macdonald, compiles data from recently released 2012-13 Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPP) as well as the 2012 federal budget to assess the impact of several rounds of spending cuts on federal employment.  The Departments of National Defence, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, and Public Works and Government Services Canada will be particularly hard hit.

“It is disingenous to focus on the 19,200 job losses that will result from the 2012 federal budget.  Those losses are just part of what is going to happen over the next three years. Several rounds of previously announced cuts will also eliminate jobs over the same period,” says Macdonald. “The recently released RPPs show that an additional 10,400 positions will be lost over the next three years, for a total of 29,600 job losses by 2015.”

The analysis points out that, due to the antiquated reporting methods used by the federal government to detail its spending and employment projections, getting a clear picture is unnecessarily complicated.

“It is regrettable that it’s so difficult to determine basic statistics like how many full-time employees the government will employ over the next three years,” Macdonald says.

The analysis notes that a significant number of positions outside of the core public service will also be lost but, due to the opaque federal government reporting, they are excluded from the analysis.

“These opaque reporting standards make it impossible to calculate the total number of job losses outside the public service at Crown corporations, non-profit agencies, and private sector firms who do business with the government. However, there are certain to be over 10,000, and more likely closer to 20,000 to 30,000 additional job losses,” Macdonald concludes.


Clearing Away the Fog: Government Estimates of Job Losses is available on the CCPA website: http://policyalternatives.ca

For more information contact Kerri-Anne Finn, CCPA Senior Communications Officer, at 613-563-1341 x306.