CUPE 3783, who represents workers at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), were shocked to learn of the abrupt closure of Medicago, a vaccine producer that makes recombinant coronavirus vaccine shot, Covifenz
Employees at Medicago were shocked to learn that they would be losing their jobs.
“This announcement, and the way this matter was handled, have left me speechless,” says Pascal Bolduc, President of CUPE 3783. “Many former colleagues have been rudely thrown out of work overnight. How can a company do this to employees who have given their all to developing new technology and meeting challenges to gain approval for the first COVID vaccine produced in Quebec? I stand shoulder to shoulder with them and wish them the best of luck in finding work quickly.”
Bolduc states that Medicago will be leaving Quebec with patents and technologies in hand, which were developed with public sector funding. “It’s high time that the government demand guarantees when they provide subsidies on this scale to these firms.”
Pharmaceutical companies are few and far between in Quebec, several former GSK employees were hired by Medicago in recent years.
Founded in 1999, Medicago, which is based in Quebec City, employed more than 600 persons in its facilities in Quebec, Toronto, and North Carolina. It developed a COVID-19 vaccine which had gotten the green light from Health Canada in February 2022 to begin production.