Justin Trudeau joyfully mobbed by federal civil servants

PM Trudeau at the rebranded Global Affairs department. Unprofessional but understandable:

Suddenly there was a buzz and the crowd moved forward.

Trudeau appeared and began to make his way out of the building. He was swarmed. Many took photos and even selfies along the way.

Liberal Cabinet 20151106

Trudeau was mobbed as he tried to leave the Lester B. Pearson building Friday. He told the crowd his government would need the civil service’s absolute best. (Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press)

The prime minister was hugged. Cheers erupted. He smiled, waved and stopped by the door.

He thanked the crowd for supporting the members of his cabinet, who had just left.

Then he continued: “We’re going to need every single one of you to give us, as you always do, your absolute best.”

They applauded and cheered some more. Some yelled back: “You’ve got it.”

One longtime staffer nearby said he’d never seen anything like it. Not in all of his years.

And it might not be the only instance of a crowd forming to welcome a minister Friday.

On Facebook, a photo circulated of civil servants at another location waiting to greet Sajjan.

Source: Justin Trudeau joyfully mobbed by federal civil servants – Politics – CBC News

And Donald Savoie puts it into context:

Donald Savoie, a public administration expert at the University of Moncton, said public servants are gripped by “the euphoria” of working for a government that promises renewed respect.

He said many hope they are returning to their “days in the sun” when public servants worked on policy and were listened to. He likened it to when Pope John XXIII opened the Vatican and liberalized the Catholic Church.

As a result, bureaucrats’ heckling and cheering, and unions revelling in their political campaigns, may not be appropriate but isn’t unexpected.

“Don’t try to make sense of this. School’s out and people are beside themselves with joy,” Savoie said. “Stay tuned, it’s too fresh. Wait until things calm down in a few months.

“I wouldn’t get too worked up because what happened today doesn’t define the public service and its non-partisanship.”

Public servants shed cloak of impartiality – at least for the day

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

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