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News : General Dynamics to Cut Jobs at Lynn Haven Call Center
Feb 26, 2014 -- After being touted as a huge job creator for Bay County, a new call center in Lynn Haven is now cutting up to half of its workforce.
General Dynamics gave letters to 730 employees this week to notify them their jobs are ending.
The center signs people up for and answers questions about the new government healthcare program.
Medicare and Medicaid say that the call center "staffs up and down" throughout the year. Open enrollment for the healthcare plan ends the end of March, and the call center expects a drop in call volume.
"After open enrollment ends, call centers operated by CMS contractors that have supported our effort to enroll millions of Americans in quality, affordable health coverage will be ramping down much of their activities. Similar to our Medicare call line, the call center will staff up and down over the year to meet consumer demand and maximize operational efficiency. As such, our contractors are notifying their seasonal employees of this fact through WARN Act notices, as required by law," said Richard Olague of Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.
The call centers answer questions and provide support to millions of Americans enrolling in new coverage programs through the Health Insurance Marketplace.
According to Olague, open enrollment lasts for a limited time, hiring under these contracts was seasonal in nature in order to support consumers shopping for health coverage from October 2013 through March 2014. Call centers that are ramping down their activities will be sending WARN Act notices to their employees over the next few weeks, as required by federal law. For instance, last week, two sites (Bogalusa, Louisiana and Houston, Texas) sent WARN Act notices to their employees this week that they will be closing.
U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, II issued the following statement responding to announced job cuts at the Obamacare call center in Lynn Haven that will leave 730 Bay County employees looking for work:
"The loss of 730 Bay County jobs is a stark reminder of America's transformation into a part-time, short-term society. I am saddened that these hardworking men and women are paying the price for the Obama administration's unyielding pursuit of a job-crushing, Washington-first agenda that has made private sector job growth more difficult by the day. With nearly 80% of new jobs representing part-time opportunities, we must do better to restore the certainty that these 730 Northwest Floridians deserved from the start."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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About General Dynamics:
General Dynamics is a government contractor.
Published: Tuesday, March 4, 2014