Jessome: "I can say with great confidence that it is not in the best interest of Nova Scotians."
© Ryan Taplin/Metro
Joan Jessome, president of NSGEU
By Haley Ryan
[HALIFAX, NS] – Union leader Joan Jessome says she is "raising the alarm" at the prospect of government IT jobs being outsourced to a private company.
"I can say with great confidence that it is not in the best interest of Nova Scotians to move forward," said Jessome, president of the Nova Scotia Government & General Employees' Union, on Thursday morning.
The provincial government is reviewing the $20 million SAP program, and considering moving most of the operations to an international IT business.
IBM Canada is rumoured to be the company in question, but Jessome said she could not confirm anything due to a confidentiality agreement.
SAP is used by the Department of Finance and has access to school board, municipality and government records to collect pay roll information, as well as other areas of personal information.
Jessome said people should be concerned if this data goes over to a global company.
"As a province we should be very territorial about protecting that," she said.
Jessome said the majority of the 73 government workers her union represents of the roughly 110 employees who would be affected will not work for the company if a contract goes through.
She said they will not have the same job security, and could be sent to a job in a foreign country, which they definitely don't want.
"If they wanted to be flown all over the world and live out of a suitcase ... that's where they'd be working," Jessome said.