Spirit offering voluntary-layoff option for union-represented workers in Wichita

Published: Apr. 29, 2020 at 10:11 PM CDT
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In a letter to Spirit AeroSystems employees Wednesday, CEO Tom Gentile offers all union-represented workers in Wichita the option to be voluntarily laid off.

This comes after Boeing reported losing $1.7 billion during the first quarter of 2020. Boeing plans to lay off 16,000 workers, but did say it wants to slowly restart production of the 737 Max later this year.

Spirit makes most of the 737 Max in Wichita, but the plane has been grounded since March 2019 after 346 people died in two separate crashes.

"I have been transparent this year on our expected need to align our costs to market demand and production levels at each site around the world. Based upon the information provided (Wednesday), our leadership team is now evaluating the full impact of the guidance from our customers and determining how we best position Spirit for the future," Gentile says in the letter to Spirit workers.

He explains that the offer fro union-represented workers to voluntarily be laid off is a first step toward addressing the long-term need.

Eyewitness News will reach out to Spirit to find out how Wednesday's announcement will impact production.