Over 700 Red River Army Depot Jobs Saved!
Friday, February 24, 2017
Washington, D.C. – Today, the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) praises Defense Secretary James Mattis and Acting Army Secretary Robert Speer for extending the jobs of over 700 term/temp employees at the Red River Army Depot in Texarkana, Texas. Until yesterday, the fate of these employees was unknown because the Department of Defense (DoD) had not yet approved an exemption for depot workers from the federal hiring freeze initiated by the Trump administration in January.
“There were a lot of people nervous about their collective futures at Red River,” stated Randy Erwin, NFFE national president. “Hundreds of mechanics and other specialists were left to wonder if they had jobs next week. The production capability of the depot was also in jeopardy. It was a really scary time for a lot of people,” Erwin continued.
The Red River Army Depot provides maintenance and overhaul capacities to armored vehicles and other equipment that is vital to the success of Soldiers and Marines who serve in high-risk deployments. The work at Red River is critical to maintaining military readiness, prompting a letter yesterday from Erwin to Secretary Mattis resulting in an approval for the exemption late last night.
“It was an all-hands-on-deck scenario,” Erwin stated. “This layoff would have been devastating for 700 families, and the Union did everything possible to make sure it did not happen. Our Local 2189 leadership did a great job turning up the pressure on DoD to get this extension done by bringing a lot of attention to the potential layoffs. It is the Local membership that deserves much of the credit for this victory.”
“We want to thank the members and staff in Congress who worked hard with us to save these jobs and preserve the future mission success of Red River,” Erwin said. “Everyone came together to get the job done.”