A Black Hawk helicopter
A Black Hawk helicopter
A Black Hawk helicopter

Washington – Lockheed Martin said Wednesday it is giving pink slips to 350 of its workers. Although none of them work for Sikorsky, the company made clear it was considering layoffs there.

“We continue to conduct a thorough analysis of the Sikorsky business,” said Lockheed Martin spokesman Chris Williams. “Sikorsky employees impacted will be notified and will exit the business by the end of August.”

Williams said the 350 laid off employees worked in Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems and Training businesses. The majority were notified on Wednesday.

“Although difficult, this action is necessary to ensure we remain competitive in the marketplace, secure future business opportunities, and keep our infrastructure appropriately aligned with customer demands,” he said.

Lockheed Martin announced in April it would eliminate about 1,500 jobs companywide. But it said those jobs would be eliminated largely by retirements and those who left the company voluntarily.

Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-3rd District, who represents the Sikorsky plant in Stratford, said, “Lockheed Martin’s plans to eliminate jobs at Sikorsky, which may include layoffs in Connecticut, will have a devastating impact on working families and local communities.”

“Connecticut has a rich history of being a leader in the defense manufacturing industry, and after so many commitments from the people of this state and the federal government, Sikorsky’s workers deserve better,” she said.”

“Lockheed Martin’s plan is a departure from our prior understanding that workforce reductions would be voluntary, and I am deeply disappointed that these jobs may be eliminated,” DeLauro said. “I strongly urge Lockheed Martin to reconsider this plan and take another course of action that keeps these hardworking men and women employed. My office is ready to assist workers during this time and will help affected workers with the process of applying for federal benefits.”

Both the Pentagon and private buyers have decreased purchases of helicopters.

Ana has written about politics and policy in Washington, D.C.. for Gannett, Thompson Reuters and UPI. She was a special correspondent for the Miami Herald, and a regular contributor to The New York TImes, Advertising Age and several other publications. She has also worked in broadcast journalism, for CNN and several local NPR stations. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland School of Journalism.

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