SPRINGFIELD, Vt. – Jeld-Wen, an American manufacturing company, has laid off around 80 employees, with another eight to ten in transitional temporary roles. The announcement was made on June 22, 2022, to the employees at the facility.
The company currently has two nearby facilities with one in North Springfield and the other in Ludlow, Vt. The company plans to consolidate the two facilities into just the Ludlow location.
“Over the past few years we’ve been engaged in a comprehensive review of our locations to modernize our network and raise efficiency across the globe. We want to make sure we can meet our customer demand and invest in areas that will continue to grow the business,” said Caryn Klebba, the company’s head of Global Public Relations.
The North Springfield location has been a longtime employer of a large number of Springfield residents since it moved to the Precision Park location in 2007. According to Kristi Morris, the Chair of the Springfield Selectboard, Jeld-Wen had just signed a ten-year lease to the property. Morris also stated that Jeld-Wen had asked Acrylic Design, another company at the Precision Park location, to vacate their location so that Jeld-Wen could expand into their area. Morris stated that although they did not want to leave, they left last year after liquidating their equipment.
“We are significantly disappointed and a little dismayed. I can only assume it’s a business decision on the corporate level and without regard to the employees,” Morris said to the Eagle Times.
Klebba mentioned that it has been disclosed that Jeld-Wen intends for the closing of the Precision Park location to be temporary. She stated that Jeld-Wen is a long term employer in the area, and plans to keep the space while they decide on how best to utilize it.
“This is not a reflection on the efforts of anyone within the two facilities. This is the result of the deployment of lean manufacturing principles that Jeld-Wen follows. It’s part of a comprehensive effort across the globe,” Klebba said.
As a result, the Vermont Department of Labor has begun their “Rapid Response” services. The VT Department of Labor will also be sponsoring a job fair next week.
Springfield’s Regional Development Corporation will also be working toward helping people affected by the layoffs find employment in the coming weeks. The Regional Development Corporation has had around a half dozen employers contact the office with a number of different job opportunities. They have also stated they are helping funnel people to the Department of Labor to get any resources, help and information they might need. The RDC has also stated that they will have details about the positions in the companies that will be at the job fair.
“You never want something like this to happen. It’s a very serious situation but if it had to happen maybe it’s as good a time as any in terms of job opportunities out there.
We’ve been through layoffs before and we want to help the people of Springfield stay on their feet,” said Springfield Regional Development Corporation Executive Director Bob Flint.
Former Jeld-Wen employees who were contacted about the layoff said that they were unable to speak about it for “federal reasons.” Anyone with questions that was affected by the lay off can find information resources at www.labor.vermont.gov, or reach the Vermont Department of Labor at 802-828-4000.
Written by Dylan Marsh of the Eagle Times Staff