Sixty-four casual and part-time staff have been laid off by the City of Lloydminster.

The city says the layoffs are a direct result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic response. Most staff were based in the recreation and culture facilities which were closed to the public on March 16. Staff in other service areas were also let go.

“Our thoughts are with our valued co-workers and the families who are impacted by these layoffs,” City Manager Dion Pollard says. “These people have done great work for this community and we sincerely wish there was a better alternative, but the ongoing situation has left us few options at this time.”

The city says difficult staffing decisions were necessary with the facilities being closed and unable to host guests or bring in revenue to offset operational costs.

“With safety, continuity of service and financial accountability as our guiding priorities, we must constantly assess and adapt our municipality’s pandemic response plan to meet new and emerging challenges relating to COVID-19.”

Hours for casual and part-time staff are scheduled on a weekly to monthly basis, based on work need. The formal layoff notices allows staff without scheduled hours to access options such as employment insurance benefits.