Conservative MP Keith Ashfield gestures in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, June 17, 2010. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Thirteen workers with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans in P.E.I. received notices Thursday that their jobs could be affected by pending cuts.
How many actually lose their jobs should be known within the next six months, said Mary MacNeil, Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) regional representative.
It is a wait-and see situation for the employees that could be affected. Those employees include carpenters, welders and maintenance workers.
"So it's nerve racking,'' said MacNeil.
She fears there could still be a further round of cuts later.
Provincial Fisheries Minister Ron MacKinley said any time there are job losses in P.E.I. it hurts, whether they are federal or provincial employees.
"That seems to be the way the federal government is going," he said.
MacKinley said he only heard about the cuts Thursday and didn't know what impact it would have.
"It's yet to be seen," he said.
DFO would not provide any regional breakdowns saying only that "changes will be proportionally applied in all regions of the country''.
While affected unions put the total number affected across the country at 1,072, DFO spokesperson Mélanie Carkner told The Guardian only about 400 positions will be removed from DFO's 11,000 strong workforce.
"This works out to less than two percent a year over three years and our attrition rate has consistently been about six percent each year,'' said Carkner.
DFO provides fisheries management, licensing and other services from its main office in Charlottetown.
There are four detached offices located in Alberton, Montague, Souris and Summerside. There are some 60 small craft harbours around the island, and DFO has facilities in the harbours of Charlottetown and Souris.