After a successful fight-back campaign against contracting out call centre jobs at Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), the Agency has brought these jobs back into the federal public service.
CRA had quietly outsourced roughly 130 jobs to a third-party contractor in March to answer general questions about the emergency pandemic benefits available to Canadians.
But PSAC and the Union of Taxation Employees quickly raised several issues with the decision to outsource these jobs. Private call centre agents didn’t receive the same rigorous training as public service workers and weren’t held to the same high standards as CRA employees.
Contracting out is also more expensive and inefficient than using government staff. In the end, taxpayer dollars wind up in the pockets of wealthy corporations while Canadians pay the price with poor service and privacy issues.
"Public services should always be provided by public sector workers,” said Marc Brière, national president of the Union of Taxation Employees. “When it comes to dealing with sensitive personal information, this is crucial. Our members have undergone extensive training and adhere to strict guidelines to access the personal information of taxpayers."
Thousands of PSAC members took part in the campaign, emailing the Minister and MPs with their concerns. CRA heard our message, and the contract was not renewed.
“Our union will continue to fight privatization of public sector jobs,” said PSAC National President Chris Aylward. “And we will continue to win – because the government knows what we know; that contracting out costs more money and provides poorer service to Canadians.”