Message from the President

January 04, 2012 The rumour mill has been grinding steadily these past few months with the news that the Government has asked all of its departments and agencies to prepare two austerity plans: one to achieve a 5% budget reduction and the other for a 10% reduction. The Treasury Board ministers have reviewed these plans and will be announcing their decision for the 2012-2013 federal budget, which is expected to be tabled in the House of Commons in February or March of 2012.
We have seen, particularly this past year, the impact of the program reviews already undergone by departments and agencies. Some, such as Public Works and Government Services Canada, were more hard hit than others.
CAPE therefore has had to adopt mechanisms to monitor the situation very closely, inform affected members and the executives of other locals, coordinate the file internally and dispense appropriate services. We were the first federal public service union to insist that departments and agencies set up an alternation system; our efforts appear to have been successful in this regard, since Treasury Board has announced the creation of just such a system.
We have also added to our website a new section on “Work Force Adjustment,” the link to which appears in the right-hand menu on CAPE’s home page. Several information tools have been posted there for our members, including a FAQ on WFA, a flowchart depicting the WFA process, and a document entitled “The Continuation of Employment of Affected Employees.”
This last document will be of particular interest to affected CAPE members, since it presents an innovative process that has been put in place by CAPE to establish a link between affected employees who wish to remain in the federal public service and employees who wish to leave their jobs, for whatever reason. We encourage members to consult these documents at the following address: /EN/specialNotice1/.
This February, on an exceptional basis and in anticipation of the forthcoming federal budget, CAPE will be offering Local Leaders information sessions on the Work Force Adjustment Directive and the role and responsibilities of Local Leaders in this regard.
In the meantime, CAPE continues to maintain that these potential budget cuts are pointless, that they will prove harmful to the Canadian public, and even that they are irresponsible given the present state of the Canadian economy. Furthermore, CAPE is working jointly with other unions representing federal public service professionals to develop a media campaign against the government’s projected cuts. This campaign will be launching early in 2012.
As we enter this New Year, my wish for everyone is to have a government that is attuned to the real needs of the Canadian public: a government capable of setting aside its ideological differences and returning to the kind of grassroots Canadian values that have been shunted aside far too much of late.