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JobWave CEO: 'They got themselves in this pickle'

The CEO of the company that last year bought WCG International Consultants Ltd. said he won't be getting involved in the company's dispute with the B.C. government, which canceled WCG's contract to provide JobWave in the Interior last month.

“They got themselves in this pickle, they have to get themselves out of it,” said Fletcher McCusker, the CEO of Providence Service Corporation. “We're relying on our Canadian brethren to work through these issues with the province... From our perspective, these are local issues.”

JobWave is a program to help welfare recipients find work. The government cancelled the $8 million contract in the Interior, saying the company was not meeting the expectations set out in its contract. WCG still has four other JobWave contracts, plus four in the Employment Program for People with Disabilities.

The Tyee also obtained reports that said some job program providers were billing for services they never provided and overcharging when they did provide services.

Local representatives of WCG, which is Providence's only interest in Canada, have not returned calls.

“The organization is not viewed so negatively they would terminate all their contracts,” said McCusker.

Still, he said, Providence is known for keeping the contracts it wins. “We've never lost a contract. We've been in business for 12 years and we've never lost a contract,” he said. “This is definitely unique to us and seems to be entirely local.”

Contracts should be based on the quality of work, not politics, he added. “You don't really win this business long term through political favour,” he said. “They've got to do a good job and the payers need to recognize that . . . They have to believe they're getting a good outcome, a good value, or they should terminate the contract.”

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