Shaw temporarily lays off 10% of workforce

Shaw Communications says it’s made the difficult decision to temporarily lay off approximately 10% of its workforce, mostly those in retail and sales roles, effective Apr. 16.

“Government leaders across the country have taken significant and necessary steps to ensure the health and safety of Canadians and to limit the spread of the virus. These measures have resulted in dramatic shortages or stoppages of work in specific areas of our business where we have had to make the hard decisions being announced today,” said Shaw President Paul McAleese, in a release. “We value the hard work and expertise of all our employees in helping deliver connectivity to our customers across the country. Unfortunately, these changes are necessary until our business activities resume to more normal levels.

McAleese said the company will be providing financial support, using its own funds, to top up affected employees beyond government programs and continue to pay out company benefits and pension contributions during the layoff period. Right now, Shaw is ineligible for emergency government assistance.

McAleese added that the Shaw network continues to see spikes in usage, but that network upgrades have put the company “in a solid position to handle increased traffic.”

“With the world navigating through the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s never been clearer how important it is for people to be connected to stay in touch with friends, families and loved ones,” said McAleese.

Shaw is just the latest internet service provider to make temporary layoffs, following a 10% workforce reduction at Quebecor and the layoff of 130 employees at TekSavvy, among other companies.

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