RAVENSWOOD, W.Va. (AP) — Workers at Ravenswood Specialty Services Inc. have known for a year their jobs could be in jeopardy, and on Friday that fear was confirmed with layoff notices.
The plant itself is expected to close Nov. 9, according to Sam Southall, president of the United Steelworkers Local No. 8997, which represents workers at the facility.
Southall, with 17 years at the company, was one of the 34 who was laid off Friday.
Workers had thought the company — which makes nylon raw material and a substance called Minlon — was experiencing a turnaround, after some of the 40 workers who were laid off early this year came back to the plant.
Now, Southall said the union was hoping to get the federal Department of Labor to recognize that workers lost their jobs because of a free trade agreement.
That recognition allows workers to receive up to two-and-a-half years of unemployment pay and up to $20,000 for retraining.