Demonstrators see 'glimmer of hope' after Liberals vow to replace pay system

Civil service unions say they will hold the government's feet to the fire now that the Liberals have promised to replace the troubled Phoenix pay system with a compensation system that works.

Federal employees rallied in cities across the country Wednesday, marking the second anniversary of the disastrous launch of Phoenix.

The lunch-hour protests come a day after the Trudeau government announced it will build a new pay system and eventually scrap the IBM-built Phoenix program.

While many workers say they're encouraged that the pay system will be replaced, their unions say they won't let their guard down until the government delivers on its pledge.

The Phoenix pay system has been a nightmare for tens of thousands of civil servants since it was formally launched two years ago.

Fixing Phoenix, which has left many government employees underpaid, overpaid or not paid at all, is, so far, expected to cost upwards of $1 billion, with estimates that the final tally could go much higher.