Unifor demands SaskTel rural expansion be done in-house

Main Image
“Rear view of a white van with an Alberta license plate that reads ‘Contractor’”

REGINA—Highly qualified union workers at SaskTel should do the work involved in the company’s massive expansion of its fibre optic broadband network into rural Saskatchewan.

“There is no shortage of public telecommunications work to do for the people of rural Saskatchewan. This work should be done by SaskTel’s highly qualified union workers,” said Len Poirier, Unifor National Secretary-Treasurer. “Contracting out these infrastructure jobs to the lowest bidder would be a slap in the face to rural communities.”

“SaskTel is owned by the people of Saskatchewan. Let’s make it do better to employ the people of Saskatchewan,” he added.

Over the last several years, it is estimated that nearly 1,000 SaskTel jobs have been contracted out to out-of-province companies or firms overseas.

After a new proposal to outsource unionized SaskTel jobs surfaced on government websites in early March 2023, Unifor demanded a moratorium on contracting out to protect good jobs and the integrity of SaskTel service.

“Low-bid contractors equals low quality,” said Gavin McGarrigle, Unifor Western Regional Director. “SaskTel privatization is a scam. The Sask Party has overseen an unprecedented number of public contracts handed over to their friends in the private sector.”

SaskTel’s unionized part-time customer service technicians struggle to get by with minimal hours, while contractors are fully booked, says Unifor.

Unifor represents 2,350 SaskTel workers from every region in Saskatchewan.

Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.

Media Contact

Ian Boyko

National Communications Representative - Western Region