“There is an emergency”: Federal authorities seek pest control professionals to help employees with bedbugs

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Federal government rushes to hire pest control professionals who can deal with bedbugs officials bring home from office, as bugs continue to appear in government buildings in the National Capital Region .


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According to a call for tenders released last Friday by Public Works and Government Services Canada, the federal government plans to issue up to five standing offers to pest control companies that can inspect and treat the homes and vehicles of their workers. against bedbugs as needed over the next five years.

The budget for each standing offer? Up to $ 400,000.

Procurement will close on November 22 and the tender offers an explanation for the short turnaround time.

“There is an emergency… given the health and safety risks associated with the bedbug situation in the National Capital Region. “

He called the situation “unpredictable, because it is something that is not expected in an office”.

He also notes that the problem has increased.

“Due to the increasing number of government buildings affected by bedbugs, a longer solicitation period is impractical as the Government of Canada is required to act proactively and expeditiously to control (the) spread of bedbugs. bed. “


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According to Health Canada, bed bugs come out at night to feed on people and pets. Their bites can cause skin reactions and their presence is known to cause anxiety and insomnia in people living with a bedbug infestation.

The presence of bedbugs has been confirmed in nine federal government office buildings in Ottawa-Gatineau over the past six months, Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) announced on Tuesday. They were also found in seven other federal offices across the country.

In Ottawa-Gatineau, the affected properties are: 200 Kent Street, 333 Laurier Avenue, 150 and 170 Tunney’s Pasture Drive, 200 Eglantine Drive, 300 Slater Street, 350 King Edward Avenue, 22 Eddy Street and 70 Crémazie Street.

Of the 16 buildings affected nationwide, PSPC said in 13 of them the presence of bedbugs would be considered “very low” – a classification ranging from one to 20 insects. Two buildings would be in the “low” range (21 to 100) and one, 70, rue Crémazie in Gatineau, would be in the lower end of the “medium” range. There were about 150 bed bugs.


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In a statement dated Oct. 30, PSPC asked federal employees who suspect bedbugs in their workplace to notify their manager and call 1-800-463-1850.

A report triggers an expert inspection, treatment if bedbugs are identified and post-treatment follow-up, the statement said.

“PSPC takes this issue very seriously and has worked closely with facility managers in affected departments to process detections as quickly as possible,” the statement said. “The government’s actions to manage bedbugs are guided by expert advice.”

Murray Isman, a pest control expert from the University of British Columbia, had worked with the government on his bedbug problem. PSPC said it is also randomly testing high traffic buildings, educating employees and cleaning staff on what to look out for, and consulting with federal public sector unions on the bedbug issue.


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The Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), the largest union representing federal public servants, has asked the government to cover all fumigation costs for employees who find bedbugs in their homes and work in buildings where insects were also found.

The PSAC also called on the government to inspect all of its buildings across the country using sniffer dogs to detect bedbugs and to fumigate the entire building if the bugs are found.


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