Pink Slips for Everyone

Lockheed Martin will formally notify its 120,000 employees this fall that they may lose their jobs because of sequestration, said company chairman and CEO Bob Stevens June 19. During a press conference in Arlington, Va., Stevens said the Budget Control Act “is on the books, and the President has said he would veto” any change to it. Thus, the company must assume sequestration will happen and must take action to get ready and satisfy its “fiduciary responsibility” to its shareholders, he said. In many states, employees must receive 60 days warning of a layoff; in New York, it’s 90 days, meaning the notices could go out as early as Oct 1, he said. About 12,000 employees would lose their jobs, if sequestration takes 10 percent of Lockheed programs, said Stevens. However, “we just don’t know” how it would be implemented, so there’s no way to predict which programs would be affected, or to what degree, so all employees are technically on the block, he noted. The employment hit doesn’t count the secondary effect on the company’s 40,000 suppliers, he said. He urged Congress to head off the crisis by striking a budget deal.