Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Around the Arctic April 11, 2012 - 8:30 am

Public service gets word on job cuts

Aglukkaq defends NAHO cut, citing "repeated organizational problems"

SPECIAL TO NUNATSIAQ NEWS
CBC North will lose six jobs as the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. moves to cut 475 positions this year to deal with budget cuts. (PHOTO BY JANE GEORGE)
CBC North will lose six jobs as the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. moves to cut 475 positions this year to deal with budget cuts. (PHOTO BY JANE GEORGE)

POSTMEDIA NEWS

Tens of thousands of federal employees are bracing for the axe to begin dropping April 11 when the government notifies the largest number of departments and agencies yet about pending job and service cuts.

Health Canada announced last week that $5 million of the $74.2 million to be cut from the department’s budget this year will come from eliminating the National Aboriginal Health Organization, which oversaw research and outreach programs.

Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq said in a statement the organization had “repeated organizational problems.”

“The National Aboriginal Health Organization has had repeated organizational problems. Health Canada worked with NAHO in an attempt to resolve these issues but, unfortunately, they were not addressed. This has led to some member organizations withdrawing their support from NAHO.”

Aglukkaq says the government has ensured that aboriginals will not be forgotten in the wake of the organization’s closure June 30.

“To show our continued commitment to the well-being of First Nations, the budget tabled last week had significant investments for health, water, and education,” she said.

“Our focus at the federal level will be on preserving front-line health-care services to First Nations and Inuit. We continue to make major investments in aboriginal health, nursing, and research, and are investing over $30 million per year in aboriginal health research and approximately $2.2-billion in the First Nation and Inuit Health program.”

Meetings are scheduled this week at Veterans Affairs Canada, Health Canada, the Canadian International Development Agency, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and others as the government moves ahead with its plan to cut 19,200 federal public servants over the next three years.

Last week, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. announced it would be cutting 650 jobs, including 475 positions this year, to absorb a budget cut of $115 million by 2014-15.

On Tuesday, CBC informed staff of a breakdown of some of the cuts, including the elimination of 88 full-time job from CBC News to save $10 million in operating costs.

Six jobs will be lost in the CBC North operations.

With files from Nunatsiaq News

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