Employees affected by Philips Lighting's decision to shutdown a factory in Sparta TN have organized a campaign to save the plant. As reported here back in November, the company plans to move 272 jobs from Sparta (White County) to Mexico.
According to organizers, the Philips facility is profitable, has received numerous industry awards, and has been making lighting products there for 40 years. There hasn't been a work stoppage in more than 30 years and labor has negotiated contracts that keep health care costs down and profits up for the company. The company even moved subcomponent production back to Sparta from China because Sparta was more cost efficient.
Sparta business and community leaders are behind employee efforts to get Philips to reconsider. Unemployment in White Co. is 12.2%, and the region has lost 9000 manufacturing jobs over the last decade.
Organizers have launched a website at www.tellphilips.com with more info and a petition.
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