CPFilms Cuts 45 Martinsville Employees

In the current economic climate, the word "layoffs" has practically become a part of the daily news. Those fortunate enough to work in an industry that hasn't made news of this nature are mostly braced-waiting their turn. This unfortunate reality reached the window film industry last week through one of its domestic giants: Solutia-owned CPFilms Inc. Two years ago the company reported it had laid off 39 employees at its Martinsville, Va.-based production plant following an "efficiency review." Last week it laid off 45 at the same facility. In 2007, representatives for Solutia Inc., CPFilms' parent company, assured that the layoffs at that time had nothing to do with cutting costs at the facility. This time around, however, the company is citing a decrease in demand for its products as culprit.

"With the global economy, we've seen that the demand for our products has declined and we're just working to take the necessary steps to align our production and inventory with the market's demand," explains Solutia's public affairs representative Melissa Hammonds. Hammonds could not confirm which, if any, segments are feeling the greatest pinch, but she did iterate that the window film industry is by no means the only making these sorts of difficult decisions. "You and I both know, this is across the board, across the world, across industries," she says. "This is a downturn that's hitting so many, not just one specific sector."

Severance packages were issued to the 45 employees affected, including extended health care benefits. Hammonds also says CPFilms is working with contacts within the Martinsville community to ensure the best possible transition. She was not able to confirm her company's outlook for future demands, but did confirm that the current severance is considered permanent, adding that, should the company pursue hiring in the future, severed employees would be eligible for re-employment.

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