Nearly 700 out of work

Call cen­tre abruptly closes in Cape Bre­ton

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ATLANTIC -

Al­most 700 peo­ple lost their jobs at a Cape Bre­ton call cen­tre Thurs­day af­ter the com­pany an­nounced its im­me­di­ate clo­sure, leav­ing em­ploy­ees stunned and with­out work weeks be­fore Christ­mas.

ServiCom of­fi­cials gath­ered work­ers at the op­er­a­tion in Syd­ney just af­ter lunch to in­form them that it was shut­ter­ing the fa­cil­ity, fol­low­ing weeks of pay delays and a bank­ruptcy pro­tec­tion fil­ing by its par­ent com­pany in the United States.

Kayla Wil­liams, who worked at the of­fice for five years, said she was blind­sided by the news, es­pe­cially af­ter she said the com­pany of­fi­cials had re­cently promised bonuses and pay in­cen­tives.

“I am dev­as­tated to say the very least. It was def­i­nitely not what I ex­pected,” the 26-yearold said from her home in Syd­ney be­fore head­ing to the lo­cal Em­ploy­ment Canada of­fice to start the process of fil­ing for in­sur­ance.

“I want to be able put oil in my tank. I want to be able to put gro­ceries in my cup­board. I have two chil­dren here.”

Ce­cil Clarke, mayor of the Cape Bre­ton Re­gional Mu­nic­i­pal­ity, said in a state­ment Thurs­day evening that the sud­den clo­sure “came as a shock,” de­spite the com­pany’s on­go­ing fi­nan­cial trou­bles.

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