November 28, 2005

Another company, another mass lay-off

From Yahoo! News:

NEW YORK - The embattled drugmaker Merck & Co. said Monday that it will cut about 7,000 jobs, or 11 percent of its work force, and will close or sell five of its 31 manufacturing plants by the end of 2008 in moves that it says will save up to $4 billion.

The announcement comes as the company, based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., faces the loss of patent protection for its top-selling cholesterol drug Zocor in 2006 and is facing thousands of liability lawsuits from its recalled painkiller Vioxx.


Merck said the cuts are intended to reduce the company's cost structure, increase efficiency, and enhance competitiveness.

click here for all of it

I completely understand that sometimes, the only way to keep your company afloat is to downsize, but do Merk or GM or Ford plan on giving their laid-off workers their jobs back when the company is ready to hire again? These articles never mention any such promises. Since it is not the workers' fault that the company is in trouble, why should they just be left in the cold, can't these companies re-hire former employees when its time to expand? To me, that seems the only ethical way to lay-off your employees in a situation like this. At least plan on undoing what you did to them. But of course, they don't give a damn about their employees. They're businessmen, they must turn a profit, right?

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