Canadian sources are suggesting that almost half the c.5,000 people working at the countryís national information office, Statistics Canada, may be at risk of redundancy.
The organisation hit the headlines back in 2010 when its Chief Statistician Munir Sheikh resigned
over the Conservative governmentís decision to replace Canadaís mandatory long-form census with a voluntary one, citing consumer public privacy motives among others.
Around 2,300 staff have now received notices that their employment could be affected by cuts, according to www.theglobeandmail.com
. The unitís surveys are used by planners, academics, marketers and public policy researchers, and with the budgets of some of its key clients also cut, its revenue has fallen.
Academics warn that the unitís output of information will be cut significantly with the job losses, and have expressed concern that by farming out its data collection and processing Statistics Canada might lose its reputation for providing independent and non-partisan information.
The notices at Statistics Canada constitute around a third of those sent out to at least 10 departments in the current round of cuts. The government says it aims to reduce federal positions by 19,200 over the next two years and save $5.2 bn a year.
Web site: www.statcan.gc.ca