Canada’s chief statistician, Wayne R. Smith, and the federal government butted heads over conflicting principles. And Smith lost.
But the hundreds of Statistics Canada employees who mobbed him with cheers and applause on the agency’s front steps after his abrupt resignation Friday clearly thought their now former boss had won on a point of principle.
He fought for the independence from the technology super agency the government has decided is critical to its efficiency and cyber security. Smith complained behind the scenes to fellow senior bureaucrats for months that the poor services provided by the troubled Shared Services Canada were undermining Statistics Canada’s independence and ability to do its job.
The government held firm, Shared Services is here to stay.
“I never thought when I started my career in Statistics Canada 35 years ago that I would ever have the opportunity to lead the organization,” Smith told employees …
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