Another blow to our fair city came today as 475 employees of ATK were laidoff. Hundred of jobs are disappearing before our eyes. Some departments lost entire sections of people as the cuts went deep and wide throughout the company. My husband described it like this, "It felt like bombs exploding all around me. You didn't know who was going to be set off next."
This is the third layoff this year and another one will be coming shortly. Changes to the community will surely begin to be visible as homes go on the market, as shoppers stop going to stores and domestic violence and suicide rates increase.
It is hard for me to understand how a company goes under, but the hardest thing I have understanding is how one employee is chosen over another to be laid off. With the first cuts I'm sure that things like performance evaluations and job knowledge were taken into consideration but when the cuts go deeper how do they really decide who gets the ax? One of our patrons from Corinne was laid off in the last round and tells me often that he believes that it was more because of office politics than job performance. Apparently he was the only person working on some projects and customers have actually called the company and asked why work has stopped on them. I guess if you lay off the only employee who knows or works on a project, work will cease.
My heart goes out to the families in crisis over this job loss. My hope is that somehow the loss will open new opportunities for them and that eventually they will end up in a better place. As for those who remain, it will be a waiting game to see what comes next. I've said it before but it feels like rats going down with a sinking ship. The funny thing is that trillion dollar contracts hang in the balance in Washington that could save this company. Will the senators and congressmen vote the contracts through and help the employees of this company? Not likely in a year when so many are running for re-election. So even more than office politics affecting lives is the politics in our capital that keeps us and our family afloat or sets us adrift. Ahoy mateys!
Michele, Children's Librarian