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Backlog Reduction Plan
Of the 1,417 complaints from individuals that will be carried over to next year, 1,052 are considered to be in "backlog" status because they were not completed within service standards. Last year, of the 1,427 investigations carried forward, 1,298 were in "backlog" status. The office, thus, was able this year to halt the growth of the backlog and reduce it by 246 investigations.
While it is true that the office has had some success this year in reducing its backlog of incomplete investigations, it was not able to fully implement its backlog reduction plan, for which additional investigators were approved in January 2006, for fiscal years 2006-07 to 2009-10. The reason for the delay in fully implementing the plan was a delay, outside the Commissioner’s control, in securing the office accommodation necessary to house the new investigators.
The backlog reduction plan will become fully operational in 2007-08, as the required additional accommodation will be made available to the Commissioner, by Public Works and Government Services Canada, for occupancy by August/September 2007. The Commissioner remains confident that, by March 31, 2010, there will be no backlog of investigations, and incoming complaints will be investigated within service standards. Until that time, however, investigation completion time statistics will continue to exceed service standards as old cases are closed, and their lengthy duration are reflected in these statistics - as can be seen in Table 5.