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Husky Energy layoffs underway in downtown Calgary
CALGARY — Dozens of Husky Energy workers streamed out of the company’s downtown Calgary location Tuesday morning carrying envelopes and paperwork signalling they’ve been laid off.
Several workers, who did not want to be identified, confirmed the company had informed some of its workers it was making staffing reductions. Some contract workers were informed of the changes Monday evening, they said.
Some people who were let go were escorted into cabs waiting outside of the company’s headquarters on Eighth Avenue S.W.
Several people leaving the building said they believed "hundreds" of employees are affected and many knew the layoffs were coming.
"There was a bit of a slip-up a week ago where they booked off a bunch of meeting rooms, so we all kind of knew it was coming," said Cory St. Croix outside the Husky Building Tuesday afternoon.
"Some of us prepared and cleaned out the office on the weekend, getting ready for it, just in case."
In a statement, Husky Energy confirmed the layoffs but said the company "will not be sharing the number of jobs affected."
"Husky has been taking steps to better align the organization and workforce with our capital plan and strategy," read the statement.
"These changes put Husky in the best position to achieve its goals. This was about changing the way we approach our business, the way we make decisions and the way we work together to meet our goals."
"It's hard to be internationally competitive, so we're not surprised to see some continued shakeout of the industry," said Adam Legge with the Business Council of Alberta.
"There still may be more [layoffs] to come as we try to find out the landscape with respect to restricted market access," he said.
Alberta Energy critic Irfan Sabir issued a statement Tuesday afternoon, pinning the blame on Premier Jason Kenney and a reduction to the corporate tax rate.
“The Albertans who came to work today at Husky Energy only to be handed a layoff notice know that Jason Kenney’s corporate handout has failed them," it read.
"Husky made $233 million from the corporate handout, but not a single dollar has gone toward job creation. Even before this bad news, Alberta lost 15,000 oil and gas jobs on Kenney’s watch. He has nothing to offer these energy professionals beyond more finger-pointing and giveaways for corporate shareholders.”
Husky Energy is set to report its third quarter earnings on Thursday.