"We can't allow things that are inaccurate to stand." — The Word of Our Dan, February 19, 2008.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

On inequity

Bill Rowe, ever-eager to flog a dead myth, used his Tuesday call-in interview with John Gordon, President of PSAC, to continue to propagate the fib that Newfoundland and Labrador is short-changed in its share of federal civil service jobs:
Rowe: We don’t have one head office of one government department or agency in this province… Is that something that you would want to get involved in, and change that so that the federal institutions are spread more equitably across the board in this country?

Gordon: Well, most certainly. Although we represent 165,000 members across the country, 4,000 of those members are in Newfoundland and Labrador.
In other words, 2.4% of PSAC’s membership are in Newfoundland and Labrador… a province which has 1.5% of the Canadian population.

What’s that inequity again?


At 5:05 PM, January 10, 2008 , Blogger stephen said...

Not that I'm any fan of Bill Rowe but he was talking about head offices not jobs or percentage of jobs. John Gordon didn't even respond directly to his question.

At 5:45 PM, January 10, 2008 , Blogger WJM said...

In which case there are two, not, as the myth says, none.

Marine Atlantic and DFO Newfoundland [sic] Region HQ are both in St. John's.

At 8:18 PM, January 10, 2008 , Blogger stephen said...

Marine Atlantic is a good example but I wouldn't qualify DFO's Newfoundland Region HQ as a national head office - it's a regional head office.

At 9:29 PM, January 10, 2008 , Blogger WJM said...

As are the regional head offices in Halifax that the "we're not getting our fair share!" crowd complain about.

You can't win: if NL was lumped in as a "DFO Atlantic" region, they'd whine about that. But it's its own region for federal DFO purposes, and it still doesn't count. What's up with that?

At 10:06 AM, January 11, 2008 , Blogger Edward G. Hollett said...

Stephen, national head offices tend to be located in the national capital, just like provincial government head offices are located in the provincial capital.

Where's the headquarters of the health department?

Where's the HQ for the liquor corp?

Odd that the proponents of the myth Rowe was pushing don't seem to take the same view of the issue in another context.

And just to make sure, take a look at Andy Wells view when the same basic approach would have shifted jobs and taxpayers out of the St. John's region and spread them around so people in Stephenville and Deer Lake, for example, could get their fair share of provincial government spending. He howled like a banshee and decried the waste of money.

The entire argument is an intellectual fraud if nothing else.

At 2:07 PM, January 11, 2008 , Blogger Mark said...

It's helpful to recall the reaction of certain MHAs, public service unions, talk radio hosts, the print media, and everyone else from the embittered townie establishment who dismissed as absolutely ludicrous the same arguments when Premier Tobin shuffled a handful of provincial positions out of St. John's.

Secondly, one of the main reasons HQs or senior offices never stay in the "regions" for long, is that the minute such organizations make a decision their stakeholders don't agree with, said stakeholders demand to appeal their decision to "Ottawa", thus negating the whole principle of decentralizing decision-making.


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