05/08/2015 06:27 EDT | Updated 05/08/2016 05:59 EDT

Union says government has put closure of Calgary young offender centre on hold

CALGARY - The union representing correctional workers says the Alberta government is putting the closures of a young offender centre on hold, pending a review.

Erez Raz, vice-president of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees, says they received a letter Friday saying the Calgary Young Offender Centre and Calgary Maintenance Enforcement Program will stay open until an internal review is done.

Raz says the letter from Human Resources Department says the review is to be completed by May 31.

In March, then Justice Minister Jonathan Denis announced plans to move all young offenders housed at Calgary centre to Edmonton, saying both centres were "underused or significantly under capacity."

The department also said it was closing the Calgary enforcement program office, which the union says would reduce the number of investigators tracking down delinquent ex-spouses and non-custodial parents across the province by one-third.

The union said closing both centres would result in the loss of 50 jobs.

“Both of these closures could do serious harm to southern Alberta families,” said Raz. “We hope the internal review will conclude that both facilities should remain open.”