MN Grants $2M to Aid Workers Laid Off By Big Cos.

Individuals who can benefit from the grants include former workers of General Mills, Delta Air Lines, Medtronic, and Best Buy.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) announced Wednesday that it has awarded $2 million in grants to provide services for 505 workers who were laid off from nine businesses located in the state.
 
The grants are made available through DEED’s Dislocated Worker Program and will be administered through the state’s work force centers and job training partners.
 
The former workers will receive services to help them get back to work, including assistance exploring new careers, updating skills, and learning job-hunting strategies. Laid-off workers can also receive one-on-one counseling to develop a plan for finding employment.
 
A $400,000 grant will aid 100 former employees of Golden Valley-based General Mills. The food manufacturer in May announced plans to cut roughly 425 Minnesota jobs as part of a plan to lower costs and “improve organizational effectiveness.”
 
Fifty former employees of Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines will benefit from a $200,000 grant. Delta closed a warehouse at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport in May as part of an effort to consolidate its warehouse operations into one facility in Atlanta, moving about 66 jobs out of Minnesota. The company also moved the headquarters of its vacation package subsidiary MLT Vacations from Edina to Atlanta, affecting about 150 local jobs.
 
A $200,000 grant will benefit 50 former employees of Fridley-based medical device maker Medtronic, which in May announced plans to lay off about 220 workers from its Mounds View division that makes pacemakers and implantable heart defibrillators.
 
Struggling Richfield-based electronics retailer Best Buy announced store closings and layoffs earlier this year in an attempt to turn itself around, affecting about 680 Minnesota workers. A $200,000 grant will aid 50 of its former employees.
 
Seventy former employees of Round Lake-based candy company Farley’s and Sathers will benefit from a $287,000 grant. The workers lost their jobs when the company merged with Forest Park, Illinois-based Ferrara Pan Candy Company, Inc, and subsequently shuttered its Minnesota facilities.
 
The remaining grants will benefit former local workers of Cleveland-based GCA Services Group, Arlington-based TSE, Inc., the now-defunct Minneapolis-based Cooperative Print Solutions, and Curwood, Inc., which is a division of Neenah, Wisconsin-based packaging giant Bemis Company.
 
The Dislocated Worker Program provides assistance to both laid-off individuals and employers facing large-scale layoffs. Employers considering laying off more than 50 workers can tap the program for assistance to offer on-site services to employees.

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