Hundreds of Iowans Hit by Layoffs

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By Becky Ogann

CEDAR RAPIDS - In this time of recession, many Americans are worried about job security. And that fear of layoffs has become a reality for many Iowans recently.

This week we've learned of nearly 200 total layoffs in Cedar Rapids, Amana and Webster City. Many of the companies are blaming it on the weak demand and market conditions. Many workers are wondering when it's going to turn around.

And on Thursday morning, about 20 Midland Forge employees found out they are being laid off. The company says that's about 10 percent of it's workforce. Midland Forge says it's because of the economy and orders slowing down. Before Christmas it eliminated five salaried employees for the same reason. The latest layoffs will be effective at the end of the month.

Earlier this week, Clipper Windpower in Cedar Rapids announced 90 layoffs company-wide. Officials said a slowing economy caused customers to postpone orders of wind turbines.

Terex in Cedar Rapids is cutting 60 positions. The company manufactures concrete and asphalt paving equipment. Terex is blaming the weak housing market for the layoffs, saying it hopes to bring those positions back once the market improves.

The Whirlpool Amana plant is letting 54 more workers go, effective next Monday. That brings the layoffs at the refrigeration plant to more than 500. Workers there tell TV9 that they're expecting more cuts until the market rebounds.

In the central Iowa town of Webster City, Electrolux announced it will close its vacuum production plant. The 85 jobs will be moved to a plant in Mexico.

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