I used to work for the same company and was laid off there in November 2001. My friend, as a junior HR person, asked to be the HR contact handling my layoff (with my manager) to help me through it. Apparently, they had to rearrange a lot of things to make that happen because I was one of two dozen people being let go at the same time; but my friend persisted and did help me through it. We have been friends for a very long time. That was the second company for which we both worked.
So, if anyone knows of any HR positions available in the Ottawa area, please let me know and I'll pass them along.