Layoffs take effect at Deere & Company in Waterloo - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Layoffs take effect at Deere & Company in Waterloo

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

Hundreds of Deere and Company workers are no longer Deere and Company workers.

Indefinite layoffs announced by the company went into effect Monday at facilities in Black Hawk County.

The layoffs cover 462 workers.

About 240 workers at the Tractor Works and nearly 200 more at Drivetrain Operations in downtown Waterloo.

Some laid-off workers are now having to find new employment.

DeCarlos Carey loved his job at Deere and Company.

He worked overnights, assembling tractors.

But he wanted more.

So he's at Hawkeye Community College working toward a degree in industrial maintenance.

"I wanted more job security, better wages, better benefits, and be able to go somewhere and get a job anywhere," said Carey.

Carey says he wants to be an electrician or do mechanic work.

He says he's lucky because he has a plan and a goal.

He says many of his co-workers who lost their jobs still don't know what they're going to do.

He says that was evident on his last overnight shift Thursday.

"It was really indecisive on what's going on. Some people were happy, oddly, some people were sad. A lot had a lot riding on John Deere benefits and good wages so, some disappointment," said Carey.

Deere has not indicated if it expects any more layoffs.

UAW Local 838 president Tom Ralston says the union is doing everything it can to help its members who were affected by the layoffs.

This is the first indefinite layoff for Deere and Company in the Cedar Valley since 1999.

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