Union leader says cuts will limit adult education upgrades
The head of Newfoundland and Labrador's largest union said job cuts at the College of the North Atlantic will prevent many adults from upgrading their education or changing careers.
The college has said it will cut at least 15 support staff and 23 instructors. Nine of those positions were related to adult basic education and courses which help adults transition into different parts of the work force.
Carol Furlong, president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Public and Private Employees (NAPE), said those cuts mean about 100 fewer seats for students in those areas, leaving just 140 seats across the province.
Furlong questions timing
Furlong said the cuts are puzzling given the province's plans for re-training.
"We know that fish plants throughout the province are closing down. Government has indicated they're gonna try and help people transition," noted Furlong. "So this is the kind of program many of them would avail of, and now we see it's being cut, so we really have to question the timing of the cutting of this."
Furlong suspected that the college cuts may been related to the 3% cut in provincial government services, announced in the March 2012 budget, but she said that the province has gone back on its word to avoid cuts to core areas such as health and education.