UTE’s response to the Report of the Auditor General of Canada on CRA Call Centres

November 22, 2017

To: UTE members working in CRA Call Centres

Sisters and Brothers,

The Union of Taxation Employees (UTE) welcomes the results of the report tabled yesterday in Parliament by the Office of the Auditor General (OAG) on the Call Centres at the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

We agree with the findings and recommendations contained in the report.

For a number of years, UTE has been advocating for the CRA to provide more and better training to its call centre agents in order to deliver excellent quality services to Canadians. We know that our members working in CRA Call Centres are committed to do just that but they need to get better support from the employer.

We are not surprised that the report of the OAG confirms our longstanding concerns but we also acknowledge the CRA’s commitment to improve the delivery of service.

Our union appreciates the fact that CRA has increased its average number of agents by 23% in the last five years but the volume of calls has increased by 27% during the same period of time. Also, the report of the OAG doesn’t take into consideration the closure of the face-to-face counter service in CRA offices in 2012 and 2013 where 283 front-line agents were removed from operations.

We believe there are not enough agents to handle the volume of calls and the OAG report demonstrates this very clearly when it shows 29 million calls are blocked yearly. We also believe that the CRA should consider reinstating the face-to-face counter service in its offices across the country.

The UTE Call Centre Committee attended conference calls with the employer over the last month to initiate discussions regarding the CRA Contact Centre Transformation Initiative and will make every effort to ensure that the employer respects its commitments. The Committee plans on asking the CRA for detailed information on the enhancing of the training and support to the call centre agents the employer is referring to. The Committee has also reached out to our eleven (11) Call Centre Locals to identify your concerns and will be using the information provided to make recommendations to the employer.

I want to assure you that your union, UTE, will continue to support you and defend your best interests.

Finally, I want to thank you for your dedication and for the excellent work that you do in serving Canadians every day.

In Solidarity,

Marc Brière
National President
Union of Taxation Employees