June 5th, 2014 ERIE – The United States Department of Labor once again ruled in favor of displaced General Electric workers who lost their jobs. Today’s decision was based upon an increase in imports that reduced production in absolute terms at the Erie plant. More than 300 workers will now qualify for: extended unemployment compensation extended healthcare, worker training and relocation benefits.
“We filed on behalf our Union families because it was the right thing to do, and once again the Department of Labor has ruled in support of workers.” Said Scott Duke, President of UE Local 506. “In real dollar terms this could be worth millions of dollars of benefits to the workers who have lost jobs as wells as workers who are at risk of losing jobs as GE continues to transfer to the Fort Worth Texas facility.”
“For men and women who have suffered through the harsh unemployment conditions this is a ruling that has the potential to change their employment outlook with the offer of job training and immediately help bring some financial relief to their families.”
This is the second time in four years that the Department of Labor has granted TAA benefits to local GE workers. In 2010, the Department of Labor granted TAA benefits to approximately 1,000 laid off Workers on the grounds that the company had shifted production abroad.
Ronald A. DiNocola, UE 506’s lawyer, who successfully represented them in the 2010 and 2014 petitions, submitted substantial documentation in support of the petition which was filed in December 2013.
“We are pleased that this ruling will result in substantial financial and long-term training benefits to hundreds of Families.” Said DiNicola. “It is particularly important to note that this ruling will continue to help employees for the next two years. If GE’s projected worker layoff schedule is implemented, this ruling will mean significant financial relief for hundreds and hundreds of families.”
Today’s decision extended to all workers in significant areas of production including locomotive, locomotive kits, off highway vehicle wheels and marine products. The ruling extends benefits to anyone laid off since December of 2012 and will continue to provide benefits to anyone laid off over the next two years