A Conservative decision to recklessly cut 19 Citizenship and Immigration offices and throw one third of the workers in the central call centre out of work has resulted in reduced service and higher government costs.
“The Conservatives touted this as a cost-cutting measure but their lack of judgement actually led to higher costs,” said NDP Immigration critic, Jinny Sims. “The consequences were predictable. It was a flagrant lack of judgment.”
In response to the office closures across the country, those in need of support were directed to call the CIC call centre in Montreal. At the same time, the Conservatives laid off 75 of the centre's 225 employees. According to the CBC response rate for calls fell sharply to less than 10 percent. As a result, more money had to be spent to hire more staff and, this time, with the added cost of training.
“It’s a blatant waste of public funds,” said NDP Immigration deputy critic, Sadia Groguhé. “If the Conservatives hadn’t made these reckless cuts in the first place, the public would have been better served, employees would have kept their jobs and, at the end of the day, it would have cost less.”