MEDIA RELEASE: Gross Misconduct of Island Employment Management Leaves Workers Jobless

Today’s report from the Auditor General on Island Employment Association found a mismanagement of public funds in excess of $1-million, while workers who blew the whistle on this mismanagement were left without jobs.

The AG’s report found three major points of failure including:

  • Executive Director, certain members of management and staff engaged in unethical and unprofessional behaviour.
  • Board of Directors failed in its fiduciary responsibilities due to poor governance practices.
  • Labour, Skills and Immigration did not provide effective monitoring and oversight of IEA and did not take appropriate action to protect the public interest.

“It was the dedicated workers of Island Employment who brought this misconduct to the attention of government, and this report validates their concerns,” said NSGEU President Sandra Mullen. “Rather than deal with the issues at hand, government tried to make the problem go away by simply ending the contract with the agency, meaning that the workers who stood up and did the right thing were left unemployed. They did nothing wrong, but paid the price for government not providing the proper oversight. It’s not right.”

The NSGEU advocated for government to conduct an audit of Island Employment and hold those responsible for the misconduct directly accountable. However, government chose to terminate funding to the agency, leaving more than 30 honest, hardworking people without jobs.

“The message this sends to future employees who are aware of gross financial misconduct is to say nothing or risk losing their jobs,” said Mullen. “In her statement today, the Minister responsible expressed her sincere thanks for speaking out, but the only thanks these workers got was losing their employment, while the community lost a valuable service that helped many people find work.”

“The Minister’s thanks does little to help pay the bills, put food on the table or deal with skyrocketing inflation. What they needed was government to have their back and ensure their jobs were protected. This was not their fault, yet they are paying the highest price.”


The Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union represents nearly 36,000 workers who provide quality public services Nova Scotians count on every day.

For more information, or to arrange an interview with NSGEU President Sandra Mullen, please contact:

Lucas Wide, NSGEU Communications Officer,

902-483-0662 (cell)

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