Job losses in education and health concerning

Despite the strong economy, 1,400 health care and social services jobs and another 1,400 education jobs have been eliminated over the past year, according to Statistics Canada – a concerning trend, according to the NDP.

“This government has record revenues, but Saskatchewan families tell us that’s not translating into better services for them,” said Trent Wotherspoon, NDP Deputy Leader and finance critic. “When it comes to the basics, things are getting worse. There aren’t enough front-line health care workers. There are too many cuts in overcrowded classrooms throughout the province, and our kids just aren’t getting one-on-one attention when they need it.

“This government is spending $40 million on American LEAN consultants, but is not making sure we have enough teachers and educational assistants, or health care professionals to deal with long waits and overcrowded hospitals.”

The updated jobs numbers come from Statistics Canada’s Labour Force Survey, which also showed just since last month 200 fewer education jobs and 700 fewer health care and social services jobs.

“Businesses are obviously doing their part, turning in good job numbers – but the government isn’t holding up its end of the deal when it comes to providing the services we all count on,” said Wotherspoon. “With more people, Saskatchewan needs more health care, and more classrooms. This government is moving in the wrong direction, and that just doesn’t make sense in a growing province.”

Other industries that lost workers last month, according to Statistics Canada, include trade (-3,200); manufacturing (-1,200); and other services (-4,200). Regions that lost workers include Swift Current – Moose Jaw (-1,500) and Yorkton-Melville (-600).

The First Nations employment rate also moved in the wrong direction over the past 12 months, with Statistics Canada reporting 17.2 per cent unemployment, up .8 per cent.

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For more information, contact:
Erin Morrison, NDP caucus