The number of American Airlines employees in Tulsa who will be laid off has shrunk dramatically, because hundreds of the workers have accepted offers to leave voluntarily.
According to a news release from the Transport Workers Union Local 514, 140 Tulsa employees will have to relocate or find new jobs.
Information posted on the TWU Local 514's web site on Friday shows that the final number of jobs eliminated in Tulsa is 443. However, TWU Local 514 says 300 of those workers can move into other positions in the company.
TWU 514 says the company was originally planning to cut 2,700 jobs in Tulsa, but local union leaders were able to get that number reduced to 1,300. TWU 514 says 742 workers accepted the company's early out offer. Another 50 workers will be displaced by American Airlines from other facilities who have greater seniority. That leaves the number of jobs eliminated at 443.
Some can bump less senior employees, some will take the pay cut and stay in Tulsa, but the TWU estimates about 140 people will end up out of work.
Sam Cirri, TWU Local 514 President said, "A person will say, 'Hey, I'm going to bump the system,' and then they'll say, 'Hey, I've talked with my spouse and we're not going to leave Tulsa.' So it's very difficult to say how many will pack up and move."
So, 443 employees will either take a $5-an-hour pay cut, or lose their jobs.
It would have been much worse, if not for the 742 Tulsa employees who took early retirement.
It's going to mean the Tulsa base will be smaller by about 1,000 employees overall, but most of them are retiring.
American Airlines' largest local vendor is coping with the sluggish economy, too.
Tulsa-based Nordam eliminated 10 contract positions and 14-full time employees Thursday.
CEO Meredith Siegfried said the company began reducing temporary and contract workers in early September.
Nordam employs more than 1,600 people in Tulsa.