U.S. Steel joins Republic in announcing layoffs

Posted at 6:52 PM, Jan 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-08 18:52:40-05

One day after Republic Steel announced plans to layoff around 200 workers at its Lorain plant, neighboring U.S. Steel confirmed they will idle operations at its plant impacting around 300 workers.

United Steelworkers Local 1104 President Dennis Hamilton represented both plants. He said they received word from U.S. Steel Wednesday they would be shutting down for three weeks in March.

As for beyond Hamilton said, "A lot of it depends on the orders and they have to have so many orders to run the furnace."

The U.S. Steel plant produces tubular steel used heavily in the energy field and with falling oil prices the need for new wells and therefore demand for their product just isn't there.

"There's no drilling, the rigging and fracking are not being done," Hamilton said. "So that affects the steelworkers that produce that type of tubular pipe."

"The last year's been the most horrible time this local's ever been through," Hamilton said. "There's not been a period where this local's faced what it's faced in the last year as far as layoffs, conditions of work."

The local's membership has dropped from around 1,250 in January of 2015 to 900 today said Hamilton with no indication of where it will be in six months from now.