• Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    The telecom giant’s relocation of the call centre to Victoria will impact 130 employees see more

    Source: Times Colonist

    Windsor call centre loss, Victoria’s gain as Shaw moves staff

    The union representing Freedom Mobile call centre employees in Windsor, Ont. is protesting a decision by parent company Shaw Communications to shut the centre’s doors, calling it an “unjustified attack on employees.”

    The United Steelworkers union said the telecom giant’s relocation of the call centre to Victoria will impact 130 employees and their families.

    Shaw said it is consolidating its Canadian customer care operations into a single location in at Uptown Centre in Saanich in the coming months, in the latest step in Freedom Mobile’s integration into its overall operations. The centre will close by March. 28.

    “These decisions are never easy, and we are grateful for the contributions of our Windsor employees,” Chethan Lakshman, Shaw’s vice president of external affairs, said in a statement.

    Lakshman said after Shaw’s acquisition of then-WIND Mobile in March 2016, it deliberately deferred integration of the company to pursue its “mobile growth plan.” This integration of what is now Freedom Mobile began in Spring 2017, he says.

    The closure comes after the USW said in September that Freedom Mobile threatened to lock out its Windsor call centre employees — which joined the union in January 2017 — amid negotiations of a first collective bargaining agreement.

    The closure also comes after Ontario’s minimum wage increased to $14 per hour from $11.60 on Jan. 1, ahead of a $15 target rate by Jan. 1, 2019.

    Shaw did not respond to questions about whether the Ontario wage increase was a factor in its decision. It said all affected employees will receive a severance package that “exceeds statutory requirements, or, if unionized, in accordance with their collective agreement.”

    Lee Riggs, national president of the Telecommunications Workers Union and USW National Local 1944, said it’s unclear whether the minimum wage hike played a role in the closure. USW says the median hourly pay in the Windsor bargaining unit is $13.68, while noting that Shaw CEO Bradley Shaw’s total 2015 compensation was $13.1 million.

    “The Essex-Windsor area, this is already an area of the country that’s been ravaged by shutdowns by large corporations,” Riggs said. “It will have a very strong, negative impact on the Windsor economy.”

  • Tessa Bousfield posted an article
    Deadline for proposals: October 16, 2016 see more

    Camosun’s Computer Systems Technology students looking for Industry IT projects

    Deadline for proposals: October 16, 2016

    VICTORIA, BC (September 29, 2016) - Does your company or organization have a problem that needs a computing solution? For over 30 years, Camosun’s Capstone Project has successfully matched up industry, government and not-for-profit organizations with senior students in the Computer Systems Technology diploma program. With newly acquired skills, these students are ready to design a software solution for many business problems and are looking for real-world experience to hone those skills.
    The program is now seeking IT projects for students to begin requirements gathering in January with implementation completed in mid-June. If you are interested in submitting a project proposal, here’s how:
    1.      Read about the responsibilities and process of becoming a Capstone client at
    2.      Submit a project proposal before October 16, 2016 to Saryta Schaerer.

    There is no cost to submit a proposal. However, if you are selected as a match for one of our student teams, there will be symposium fee and a commitment to spend a couple of hours every week with your student team to get your project completed.

    For more information contact:
    Saryta Schaerer
    Chair, Computing Science, Camosun College
    250 370 4451