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Feds need 'nuanced' approach to ensure public sector doesn't lose tech talent: Anand

TORONTO — Treasury Board President Anita Anand says Canada has to take a "nuanced" approach to shrinking its public service in order to protect some of its tech worker ranks.

Anand says she does not want to see the number of cyber or procurement experts decrease in an era when their skills are crucial.

The remarks come roughly a week after the federal government's budget revealed natural rates of attrition will see the public service's size decline by 5,000 full-time roles over the next four years.

The public service sat at about 368,000 members at the end of March, but Anand said last week that no government ministry and agency would be left out of the process of cutting.

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Anand appeared virtually at a Microsoft event in Toronto, where she discussed the $2.4 billion in AI investments in the government's budget.

Anand also used her appearance at the event to tease a summit in Ottawa next month with think tanks and other stakeholders to help the government develop an AI strategy for the federal public sector.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 24, 2024.

The Canadian Press