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SPEEA secures extra assistance for laid-off workers

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Monday, Oct. 28, 2013, at 6:21 p.m.

Spirit AeroSystems’ engineering and professional and technical union has secured additional federal assistance for recently laid-off employees, union officials said.

The Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace received notice last week that the laid-off employees will be able to seek training, income support and other benefits through the federal Trade Act.

The program is designed to help eligible laid-off workers affected by increased exports or work moved to other countries.

“Approval means laid-off Spirit employees can apply for additional help, including long-term training tuition assistance, income support, health care tax credit, as well as job search and relocation allowances,” SPEEA said.

That is good news for those who were laid off from Spirit, SPEEA Midwest director Bob Brewer said in a statement.

“It doesn’t eliminate the hardships of being laid off, but it will help people find new employment,” Brewer said.

Eligible employees will receive a letter from the Kansas Department of Labor outlining the application process and deadlines for the benefits.

In recent months, Spirit laid off more than 500 employees, including 319 engineers and professionals represented by SPEEA.

Reach Molly McMillin at 316-269-6708 or mmcmillin@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @mmcmillin.

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