The Lantic Sugar plant is scheduled for closure on December 31, 1999.
Since the announcement of this closure, the provincial Department of Labour put in place an adjustment committee to assist affected workers. Both union and management are represented on this committee and the following types of services have been provided to workers to date: assistance with the writing of resumes; counselling assistance; self assessment, labour market information, job interview, role playing and job search technique sessions; and assistance on how to contact potential employers and followup.
Representatives from the local Human Resources Centre of Canada, HRCC, have been meeting with company and union officials since May 15, 1998 on this issue and a designated HRCC employee has been meeting with union officials to answer any questions workers have related to Employment Insurance, EI, benefits.
The HRCC has also offered to hold information sessions for all Lantic Sugar employees, in conjunction with union and management, to discuss EI and severance packages. The first session was scheduled for March 18, 1999 at 9 a.m., with subsequent sessions on March 25, 26, 29 and 30. These sessions took place on the employer's premises and involved approximately 20 employees per session. There were also special arrangements made to assist affected workers to apply for EI benefits as the date for the layoff approached.
In addition, the adjustment committee is working with companies in the Saint John area that may consider applications from some Lantic Sugar employees, which could result in the hiring of some of these affected workers.
HRCC staff, in partnership with the adjustment committee, are always available to provide information and assistance. These employees are encouraged to take advantage of the services provided by the adjustment committee and the HRCC.
This assistance was conducted through the new Labour Market Development Agreement, LMDA, through which the Government of Canada is now providing the province of New Brunswick with over $240 million for the next three years to help people get back to work.
Question No. 206—