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Tulsa Metro Chamber Optimistic Displaced AA Workers Will Find Local Jobs

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Tulsa Metro Chamber President Mike Neal says the layoffs will be painful. But the chamber will focus its resources on displaced workers and their families. Tulsa Metro Chamber President Mike Neal says the layoffs will be painful. But the chamber will focus its resources on displaced workers and their families.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

With thousands of jobs on the chopping block, the Tulsa area's economy will feel the brunt of the impact.

Tulsa Metro Chamber President Mike Neal says the layoffs will be painful. But the chamber will focus its resources on displaced workers and their families.

The chamber says it is thankful the first restructuring will allow the Tulsa base to stay open and that thousands of existing jobs will be retained.

02/01/2012 Related Story: City Leaders Say Tulsa, State Can Absorb Laid Off American Workers

The chamber says the community will help those who do lose their jobs, in any way it can.

"It's a significant. You never want to lose any jobs but any time you lose jobs of that magnitude, it's tough," Neal said.

In the wake of American Airlines restructuring plans, the Tulsa Metro Chamber rallied to offer support.

The Chamber says American employees are a well trained workforce that will be attractive to outside employers.

City and regional leaders say they are optimistic that those given pink slips will be rehired by local companies to do comparable work. Even jobs American outsources.

"We will aggressively be working with various third parties, private sector outsourcing companies, MRO companies, to make them aware of our world class workforce," Neal said.

Tulsa City Councilman GT Bynum says he's not looking at this as an elected official or politician. For him, it's personal.

"I've been laid off. I know what comes with that. I know what comes with talking to your family when you find out that kind of news," Bynum said.

Bynum encourages Oklahomans to not sit on the sidelines.

"Keep in mind what these folks are going to be going through and think about what it is they can do to help them," he said.

Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett says it's premature to make any solid statements over what will happen over the next few months. But he is certain Tulsa's economy will remain vibrant.

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