Stanley Black & Decker Announces Closing of East Greenwich Facility
It’s always sad to see once-thriving manufacturing plants shut down. Unfortunately, that is the trade-off for cheap goods in this country. Like many places, Rhode Island once had a pretty decent manufacturing presence, led by (now) Stanley Black & Decker among others. This week, the company announced that it will finally close its East Greenwich facility by the end of 2012. The company won’t close its doors all at once, rather they will begin a phase out as early as next March, laying off approximately half of the remaining 200 or so employees. The remaining workers are slated to move into a smaller facility and maintain operations until they shut down the plant completely.
We covered an article recently that discussed another of the company’s plant shutdowns in Shelbyville, Indiana – but that had a happier ending with employees moving only 30 minutes away to a new facility. The current production work being done in East Greenwich is also relocating to that new facility in Greenfield, Indiana but there was no indication that any employees would be relocated specifically.
“This decision was made to realign the fixed-cost structure associated with manufacturing various types of steel fasteners, to enable the Bostitch business to remain globally competitive,” the New Britain, Conn.-based Stanley Black & Decker said in a statement.
This is only the latest in a series of consolidations and US-based manufacturing reductions announced by the company, and this plant in particular over the past decades. At its peak output in the 80’s, the East Greenwich factory had around 1,400 employees. By 2008, that number had dropped to 633 workers, though the plant continued to salvage work even though much of manufacturing had moved overseas.
Stanley Black & Decker said it will be enacting a variety of measures to assist the transition of laid off workers, including separation pay, continuation of employee benefits, outplacement assistance programs (job-search assistance, resumé creation assistance, and interview preparation) to help employees who are losing their jobs at the Rhode Island plant.
Source: The Providence Journal