Another group of Navistar workers in Springfield will work their last day at the plant on Friday as a series of layoffs are scheduled to last until the end of September.
The first round of layoffs started last week and at least 136 assembly production workers will be affected by the end of the month, according to Chris Blizard, president of UAW Local 402. His union represents those workers.
Numbers provided to the News-Sun only relates to workers that are represented by that chapter of United Auto Workers. Representatives of Navistar have yet to release the total number of workers that will be affected by the layoffs.
Lyndi McMillan, a spokeswoman for Navistar, said in an email sent to the News-Sun late last week that they have not finalized numbers.
At the end of last week, 20 workers spent their last day at Navistar’s Springfield location, starting the layoffs.
Blizard said the layoff numbers his union received from Navistar last week has not changed. A memo sent to workers last week states that 52 workers will be working their last day with the company on Friday and 42 more workers will be laid off the following week.
Layoffs will be administered based on seniority and affected workers will retain recall rights at the plant. Blizard said those workers have been at the Springfield plant for less than a year.
The News-Sun previously reported that the layoffs are due to a reduction in units produced on the plant’s main line, that makes medium-duty commercial trucks.
Last week Troy Clarke, Navistar’s president and CEO, told investors during a conference call that assembly line rates have been reduced at the company’s two truck plants. He said the move was a minor tweak for the company as medium-duty and heavy-duty commercial truck production has exceeded orders nationally.
“……we are actively managing this by adjusting assembly line rates to create a balance between customer demand, inventory levels and a healthy backlog,” Clarke said during the call.
However, the line production rates for the Springfield plant’s line two, which makes vans for General Motors, is expected to increase on Monday.
Blizard said that has helped offset the number of layoffs, but added that it takes more people to run the plant’s main line. The layoffs are scheduled to end on the last Friday of the month, when 20 Navistar employees are scheduled to work their last day.
Blizard said his union is working with Clark County’s Department of Jobs and Family Services to help affected workers. Meetings will be held on each Monday of the month at the union’s clubhouse at 3671 Urbana Road.