The effects of the latest round of cuts at Sears Canada have hit hard in Montreal, where 771 jobs are being slashed at the call centre in Saint-Laurent.

Sears Canada Inc. announced yesterday that it has eliminated 283 jobs at warehouses across the country, and has plans to outsource 1,345 associate jobs over the next nine months at customer call centres in Montreal, Toronto and Belleville, Ont.

Saint-Laurent borough Mayor Alan DeSousa said the effects of the loss will be felt by the whole community.

“It is pretty much a shock … Normally you begin the new year with optimism and hope and looking forward to better things,” DeSousa said.

He said he’s concerned about how families will be able to deal with the job losses.

“This is a shot across the bow. I think people at other levels of government need to be cognisant of these trends and the impact it has.”

He said he’s been in contact with Emploi Quebec to make sure the employees get as much support as they can, and to make sure that Sears assumes its responsibilities.