Luxembourg-based steelmaker ArcelorMittal has issued a notice under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) indicating it intends to “institute indefinite layoffs” at its integrated steelmaking complex in Cleveland.
According to the WARN notice, 353 operations and 72 maintenance personnel will be laid off indefinitely. In addition, 29 salaried positions are identified in the letter as facing “permanent termination,” including two procurement specialists and three supply chain managers.
ArcelorMittal and its subsidiaries ArcelorMittal Cleveland Inc and ArcelorMittal USA LLC say the layoffs have been prompted by “business conditions [that] continue to be depressed during the pandemic, with no significant improvement in demand for the products we manufacture foreseen in the near term.”
The company adds, “We are taking this action because of COVID-19-related business circumstances that were not reasonably foreseeable as the pandemic and its economic impact progressed. We expect that these layoffs will be indefinite, and we cannot predict their duration at this time, although we now expect that they will last longer than six months.”
On its website, ArcelorMittal refers to the 870-acre Cleveland complex as “one of the most productive integrated steelmaking facilities in the world.” The site contains two basic oxygen furnaces (BOFs) and produces hot-rolled and hot-dipped galvanized sheet steel for automotive, construction and other markets. It is listed as having more than 1,850 employees.
The Cleveland layoffs occur as the global steelmaker also is facing production interruptions caused by a local government confrontation at an integrated steelmaking complex in Lázaro Cardenas, Mexico.