Silgan Plastics to close Illinois tube making facility

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

Silgan Plastics to close Illinois tube making facility
This week the personal care container maker revised an earlier restructuring plan that had indicated operation would continue and only a fraction of workers would be laid off at the site.

The new plans to close the Woodstock, Illinois, tube making and sales facility seem to be related to the company’s loss of an important local account, according to the Northwest Herald, a newspaper covering McHenry County, Illinois (an area northwest of Chicago).

Change of plans

Silgan’s October restructuring plan entailed laying off 23% of the 170 employees then working at the tube making site, according to an earlier item in the Herald. At that time, apparently, “employees at the plant…were offered severance packages and opportunities to apply to other opening within the company,” ​reported that publication.   

Now the company is set to close the Woodstock facility entirely in late April 2016.

Ebb and flow

Earlier this year, Silgan broke ground on a new facility in Hazelwood, Missouri. The company headquarters is in Chesterfield; so the state is already home, as it were. And, Silgan’s new Pennsylvania plant was in construction this spring as well, according to Cosmetics Design​.

It looks to be that the company is restructuring and relocating its facilities to keep expenses down.  “In both [Missouri and Pennsylvania] the company’s decision to do business was incentivized by economic development funding,” ​wrote Cosmetics Design.

Human resources

Regional Illinois job development pros are cautiously optimistic. “We are losing another company,” ​Pam Cumpata, president of the McHenry County Economic Development Corp., tells the Herald. “The upside is, hopefully we have enough molders in the county who are struggling to find employees that many of these people will land with other plastic molder and injection companies,” ​she says.

151 jobs will be lost when the Silgan plant shuts down, according to the Herald. It’s not an insignificant number for the area’s economy. Indeed local organizations are coordinating to help the affected workers.  Even when only 39 people were slated to lose their jobs, the county’s Workforce Network had planned to run job fairs to connect them with new opportunities.

“Those plans will be postponed until the spring once the network better understands the needs of all affected employees,” ​Workforce Network director Julie Courtney tells the Herald. “We will still be working with them to help them get re-employed,” ​she affirms.

“There seems to be a lot of interest from other plastics manufacturers in the county interested in the skills and talents of the employees affected at Silgan,”​ adds Courtney.

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