Associated Press
Friday, May 1, 2020

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Aircraft parts maker Spirit AeroSystems announced Friday that it would lay off 1,450 employees because demand for new airplanes has plummeted during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Wichita Eagle reports that an email sent to employees Friday says Boeing and Airbus reported their first-quarter financial reports this week and indicated there would be a decline in demand for new airplanes. Spirit is a supplier of parts for both companies.

“All indications right now tell us this lower demand for new commercial airplanes is likely to last for several years,” president and CEO Tom Gentile said in the email.

Affected employees in Wichita will start leaving on May 15 but some “may be asked to work during this 60 day period to provide cross training.” Employees working on the defense side will not be affected.

The email says there will be smaller reductions later this month at other Spirit sites in the U.S.

Spirit announced layoffs of about 2,800 employees earlier this year as a result of the Boeing 737 Max being grounded after two fatal flights. It also offered voluntary layoffs Thursday.

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