More than 300 employees are facing lay-offs after UTC announced plans to shut down their Pittsfield plant next year.
“We’ve had small layoffs before. I’ve been here for 16 years and I can’t recall one of this size. ”
Fortunately – other businesses are willing to help.
“The first thing we did was take a look at those folks who were members of the credit union and what we wanted to do was reach out early on and let them know that we can help them out in any way that we could,” explains James Lemieux, President of Sebasticook Valley Federal Credit Union.
Approximately 200 UTC employees are members at Sebasticook Valley Federal Credit Union.
“We’re going to help them with the loans they had with us. We can do different things, skip payments. We can restructure the loans, we can extend the loan terms to make the payments smaller..”
Helping people with loans won’t hurt the credit union.
“We wouldn’t really lose anything as far as money goes. It’s just a matter of time and being patient and helping people work through it.”
The plant will be closing in March 2015 – some employees might be relocated out-of-state, but most will be laid off over the course of the year.
“Actually, in the general course of business, people losing jobs so often happens in the state of Maine. We have helped people before. This is the first really concerted effort that we’ve gone out and tried to start.”