Employment Law as Political Tool?

July 11th, 2012 by JBWK

Bloomberg reports that Lockheed, a defense contractor, may issue some of its employees so-called WARN notices weeks ahead of the presidential election in the event Congress doesn’t step in to reverse scheduled defense budget cuts.

Federal law requires employers to send employees notices ahead of large-scale layoffs or plant closings. The company claims it will be forced to fire employees unless defense contracting holds steady; as of now, automatic cuts are scheduled starting January 1, 2013 unless Congress acts. Its critics, though, are accusing Lockheed of using the WARN notices as a scare tactic to lobby for increased defense funding ahead of a presidential election largely focused on jobs and the economy.

Its competitors may be forced to follow suit, but they say they are still assessing the situation. Virginia stands to lose a great deal: it is the state most dependent on federal defense contracting.


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