Two correctional officers from the Fort Saskatchewan Correctional Centre have been fired over last April’s wildcat strike.
The five-day strike started on April 26 after guards from the Edmonton Remand Centre refused to report for duty over safety concerns at the new facility.
Guards at other correctional facilities followed suit. The two fired officers were working as supervisors when staff walked off the job.
Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) president Guy Smith accused the government of breaking a promise made when the dispute ended.
"Numerous government officials stated on record they would not seek to punish individual union members. These suspensions are a breach of that promise," Smith said.
"The government has misled these employees, Albertans and AUPE. It's shameful."
But a spokesperson with the Solicitor General’s office said the province only fired the workers after investigating their role in the April 26 strike.
In a release made Friday night, Dan Laville said the province reviewed staff actions on a case-by-case basis, examining evidence and video surveillance footage before making any decisions.
The two officers were fired because they abandoned their posts as supervisors to participate in the strike, said Laville. Doing so placed inmates, their fellow guards and the general public in danger, he said.
The officers also disobeyed a direct order to admit new inmates, he added.
Laville said the province informed Smith in April that it would be reviewing the actions of individual participants in this way, and that disciplinary measures would be made accordingly.
Only a handful of staff out of the approximately 2,000 staff are facing disciplinary actions, Laville said.
The union has filed a grievance over the terminations and plans to take action against the government.
The two guards are not the only ones saying they've lost their jobs over the strike. Todd Ross, a guard at the Edmonton Remand Centre, was fired on June 28.
Ross had been suspended for sending emails detailing safety concerns at the new facility to the director of the remand centre and a deputy minister, which was one of the factors that provoked the walkout.
The guards were also angry that Ross and another guard were suspended for speaking out about the concerns.