Press release

Shaw Communications Announces Temporary Changes in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic

April 14, 2020

CALGARY, April 14, 2020 – Shaw Communications Inc. today announced that the extraordinary and unpredictable conditions created by the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in the difficult decision to temporarily lay off approximately 10 per cent of its workforce, largely working in retail and sales roles across the company.

“Government leaders across the country have taken significant and necessary steps to ensure the health and safety of Canadians and to limit the spread of the virus. These measures have resulted in dramatic shortages or stoppages of work in specific areas of our business where we have had to make the hard decisions being announced today,” said Paul McAleese, President, Shaw. “We value the hard work and expertise of all our employees in helping deliver connectivity to our customers across the country. Unfortunately, these changes are necessary until our business activities resume to more normal levels.

“With our gratitude, we will be providing financial support to affected employees beyond applicable government programs, and we look forward to welcoming them back when business conditions improve,” Mr. McAleese said.

Assistance and support for employees
At this time, Shaw is ineligible for any emergency government assistance programs and will use its own funds to top up government Employment Insurance payments at various levels, depending on employee earnings, and continue to extend benefits and pension contributions for eligible non-unionized employees during the temporary layoff period.

The temporary layoffs will begin April 16, 2020.

Keeping Canadians connected
“These are challenging times, but everyone at Shaw and Freedom Mobile is well aware that millions of Canadians and their families depend on us to keep them connected. We take this job very seriously,” Mr. McAleese said. “With the world navigating through the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s never been clearer how important it is for people to be connected to stay in touch with friends, families and loved ones.

“We continue to see increased usage of our network and our customers continue to enjoy strong connectivity through our wireless and broadband services,” Mr. McAleese said. “Our network upgrades over the past few years have put us in a solid position to handle increased traffic.

“We remain committed to supporting our customers with the products and services they need through digital, self-serve and self-install options to ensure they remain connected,” Mr. McAleese said.

Canadians can order Freedom Mobile services from select dealer locations and national retail partners found at locations.freedommobile.ca. Customers are encouraged to call ahead to ensure a location is open before visiting. Payments can be processed through online banking, auto pay arrangements made through the Freedom Mobile call centre, myaccount.freedommobile.ca, or the Freedom Mobile My Account app.

New or existing customers who want to order new or additional Shaw internet, home phone and video services can do so easily through shaw.ca/bundles/plans and benefit from our self-install options and in-home delivery of the required equipment. Customers can also make payments on their accounts via their My Shaw app or through my.shaw.ca/.

Supporting our communities
Since the early days of the pandemic, Shaw, Shaw Business and Freedom Mobile have announced several programs and assistance designed to support customers, families and communities across Canada. Details can be found at shaw.ca/shaw-helps and business.shaw.ca/.

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About Shaw
Shaw Communications Inc. is a leading Canadian connectivity company. The Wireline division consists of Consumer and Business services. Consumer serves residential customers with broadband Internet, Shaw Go WiFi, video and digital phone. Business provides business customers with Internet, data, WiFi, digital phone and video services. The Wireless division provides wireless voice and LTE data services through an expanding and improving mobile wireless network infrastructure.

Shaw is traded on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges and is included in the S&P/TSX 60 Index (Symbol: TSX - SJR.B, SJR.PR.A, SJR.PR.B, NYSE – SJR, and TSXV – SJR.A). For more information, please visit www.shaw.ca

For media inquiries, please contact:
Shaw Communications Inc.
Chethan Lakshman, VP, External Affairs
(403) 930-8448
chethan.lakshman@sjrb.ca