Local help for workers affected by Smith and Wesson move | News
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) — With Smith and Wesson leaving Springfield for Tennessee by 2023 local leaders are stepping up to figure out how to help the more than 500 impacted workers now.
The Executive Director for MassHire said they are putting together a team of people trained in handling this kind of workforce reduction.
“Right now, what we’re trying to do is assess the scale of the layoff,” MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board CEO Dave Cruise said.
With more than 500 local jobs impacted by gun manufacturer Smith and Wesson’s move to Tennessee by 2023, the outpouring of support from local resources for impacted workers has already been overwhelming.
“We’re optimistic will be able to work with Smith and Wesson and their employees to assist those employees that will be impacted by this reduction in force,” Cruise said.
Cruise tells Western Mass News he is putting together a team of people trained in handling a workforce reduction like the size of this one.
“We have experience working in these kinds of situations before so, will be bringing some of our local people and bring in some folks that we work with on the state level,” Cruise said.
This is not something the area has ever seen, back in 1967 the Springfield Armory was shut down leaving hundreds of skilled workers without jobs.
Right now, there is an increased demand for manufacturers across the Commonwealth. MassHire had a hiring event at the end of August with companies looking for those skilled employees.
The good news is if Smith and Wesson employees enter the job market sooner rather than later there are local opportunities.
“We are fortunate here in the region we have a significant number of both small and medium-sized manufacturing companies,” Cruise said.
Cruise said impacted workers can expect job fairs in the future, and they do plan on working with Smith and Wesson and the impacted families to help make sure everyone is taken care of.