Caterpillar laying off KK employees due to COVID-19, economic struggles

Business News

EAST PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Caterpillar Inc. on Monday said an unspecified amount of employees at building KK in East Peoria are being laid off.

Spokeswoman Kate Kenny said the company is taking action globally to reduce production due to the lack of customer demand and potential supply constraints amid the COVID-19 pandemic. She also noted that Caterpillar employee operations are considered essential service.

Kenny provided the following statement:

A number of governments continue to classify operations such as Caterpillar’s as essential activity for critical infrastructure. Customers use our machines, engines, generator sets and parts to provide electric and stand-by power for hospitals, grocery stores and data centers; they transport food and critical supplies on the roads and rails; they mine essential commodities and extract the fuels to  enable stable electricity; and much more. While our operations have been classified as essential activity, the COVID-19 pandemic is having an impact on global economic conditions.  We are taking a variety of actions at our global facilities to reduce production due to weaker customer demand, potential supply constraints and the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and related government actions. These actions include indefinite layoffs at our East Peoria building KK location. 

Kate Kenny, Caterpillar spokeswoman

Caterpillar temporarily closed its Mapleton location last week. There is no word on how long it will be closed.

On March 18, Caterpillar leaders sent an email to employees encouraging them to work from home that following day through March 31 with permission from their supervisors.

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