Illinois employers plan 1,000 layoffs in coming weeks


Tribune staff reporter

8:52 AM EST, March 7, 2014


Illinois employers warned they would lay off more than 1,000 workers in the coming months, according to notices filed with Illinois regulators in February.

Accretive Health warned it would lay off 148 workers. The company said in January the layoffs are part of a broader restructuring in which positions will be moved from Chicago to other cities to be closer to clients. Accretive said then the layoffs could affect as many as 170 workers. The company employs about 600 people in the region.

Graham Packaging Co., a maker of blow-molded plastic containers, gave notice to 170 workers, who could lose their jobs as soon as May due to a consolidation.

Passages Hospice said it closed its doors and laid off 88 people in February. The owner of the company was charged in January with federal health care fraud for allegedly engaging in a scheme to obtain higher Medicare and Medicaid payments.

Office Depot, which merged last year with OfficeMax, warned it would lay off 54 workers and that the layoffs began in January. The company told the state at the beginning of the year it would layoff an unspecified number of workers in April due to its headquarters relocation to Boca Raton. In a company memo obtained by the Tribune, the company said the move would mean the loss of about 1,600 workers in Illinois. About 400 workers are expected to stay in Illinois.

Other companies reporting layoffs included PolyOne designed Structures and Solutions, Sodexo and American TV and Appliance of Madison.

Employers with more than 100 employees are required to give 60 days notice of possible layoffs under the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining (WARN) Act, but only when a third of the workforce or more than 500 workers could be affected.

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