Duncan Aviation Layoffs First in Company History

 - March 12, 2009, 9:28 AM

After trying to cut costs by reducing wages and work hours, Duncan Aviation has “had to implement a reduction in its nationwide work force.” It is the first such action in Duncan’s 53-year history, the company explained in a statement. The layoffs affect 304 positions, including 170 at Duncan’s Lincoln, Neb. headquarters; 122 in Battle Creek and Kalamazoo, Mich.; and 12 at satellite avionics and engine facilities in the U.S. Declining business projections indicate that Duncan’s activities will be significantly down for most if not all of this year, according to chairman Todd Duncan. The decision to lay off employees was “one of the hardest we have ever had to make,” said president Aaron Hilkemann. “We know it is the right one for the long-term health of the company, but we feel horrible because these productive and valued team members are not personally at fault in any way, yet they are now out of work.” Laid-off employees will receive assistance from Duncan Aviation, including “a fair severance package and assistance with counseling services, grief management, training, résumé writing, networking and job hunting. They will also receive special consideration when positions open up within the company.”