Phoenix: Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates—April 24, 2020
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Current status in light of COVID-19
Due to the ongoing and evolving COVID-19 outbreak, Public Services and Procurement Canada’s services may be delayed. This may result in concerns regarding the continuity of pay services for public servants.
- Pay services are provided without interruption and supporting employees remains a top priority
- Services related to pay are considered essential and measures are in place to ensure that operational requirements are met
- Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) monitors the situation daily and is ready to respond should any issues arise
- We are working closely with all our partners, including employees, unions, members of Parliament offices, departments and their representatives from human resources (HR) and pay, to provide support during this challenging time
- Thanks to the hard work of our Pay Centre employees, the backlog has not increased. In fact, we have continued to see a steady decline in the queue
- The Client Contact Centre (CCC) remains available to assist any public servant experiencing pay issues
Specific measures in place for COVID-19
- PSPC has introduced interim administrative measures to support pay service delivery. For example, we implemented secure measures to simplify and speed up the approval process of a range of pay-related transactions
- Employees who cannot access the government network can request to have their pay stubs through mail or epost, by contacting the CCC
- The Pay Centre has suspended all new recoveries of overpayments that are eligible for flexible repayment measures
- The Pay Centre will continue to issue letters informing employees of their overpayment situations. However, recoveries will not be initiated until further notice
- Should an employee choose to proceed with a lump sum repayment, they will be entitled to do so
- Existing recovery plans will remain in place. However, employees facing financial hardship can request to have their recovery plans modified, by contacting the Client Contact Centre
- Employees with pay issues continue to have access to emergency salary advance or a priority payment when necessary
Following the recommendation of the Public Health Agency of Canada, PSPC asked all its employees, including those at the Public Service Pay Centre and the CCC, to work from home if possible, while ensuring the delivery of essential services.
The Pay Centre continues to focus on processing essential pay services, which include regular pay, return from leave, maternity and parental leave, disability insurance and departmental emergency salary advances.
The CCC remains the first point of contact for current and former federal public servants looking for information or help with compensation and benefits. Clients may, however, experience increased wait times when calling the CCC.
Supporting employees and resolving pay issues are top priorities and we continue to see progress.
From February 19 to April 1, 2020, the backlog of transactions with financial implication has decreased by 17,000. Over the past 2 years, since January 2018, the backlog has decreased by 57%, from 384,000 to 166,000 transactions.
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