The CertainTeed ceiling tile plant in Meridian delivered some bad news to about ninety of its employees Tuesday.
Citing the economic downturn and sluggish commercial building, the plant is laying off those workers in 60 days.
Plant manager Kyle Watts said it wasn't an easy decision for the company to suspend production indefinitely. He said some employees have been with CertainTeed and its predecessors here for about 30 years.
"Since about September, October of last year, the business has dropped off dramatically. There's been closings in similar construction items that we make throughout the country. Other construction related businesses have either shut down production, slowed production down or shut completely down. So that's where we are," said Watts. "The construction commercial construction business is what we do and it's been affected greatly. We just ask if there's anybody in the public that has opportunities for these folks, we have some well-trained well-disciplined, very professional folks and anything that you may have to offer, feel free to call us, so we can help these folks find a find something."
Watts said the company wanted to give employees as much notice as possible.
Production will continue until mid-August and then be consolidated to a sister plant in Michigan. Fifteen employees will remain for distribution and sales.
CertainTeed produces ceiling tiles and acoustical wall panels used in residential and commercial construction.
“It is always a difficult decision to shut down a production operation,” said Cedric Woindrich, vice president and general manager of CertainTeed Ceilings. “The employees at the Meridian plant have demonstrated an absolute commitment to safety, quality and teamwork and this decision in no way reflects their hard work and dedication to our business.”
Woindrich said the company is committed to providing those who will be leaving the Meridian plant with the resources they need to identify new opportunities in the local area and within CertainTeed.
In addition to Meridian, CertainTeed operates ceiling tile plants in L’Anse, Michigan and Plymouth, Wisc., as well as a ceiling tile grid production facility in Ellenton, Fla..