Tuesday, January 27, 2009


You may have noticed the news yesterday that my employer, Caterpillar, announced it was in the process of laying off 20,000 employees. Many media outlets incorrectly reported that all 20,000 lay offs occurred yesterday; in fact, these job reductions have been taking place over the past two months.

What disturbed me and my coworkers was the 20,000 number: we had, up to that point, known of 15,000 lay offs--but we were unable to account for 5,000 of the lay offs. Yesterday was, in fact, an announcement of 5,000 previously unknown job cuts. There was a lot of dark humor circulating in the office yesterday as we joked about losing our jobs.

But today in a meeting with our vice president, we were relieved to hear that none of the job cuts would be occurring in our business unit (research and development). Sadly, there was a definite sense of emptiness to the relief. While I realized the pink slips had past me and my immediate coworkers, I am unsettled knowing that our colleagues in other divisions will be meeting a different fate in the days to come.

We have yet to learn where exactly the cuts will come. :-/


Pomoprophet said...

Well glad you still have a job. I've heard the unemployment numbers. In CA they're nearing 10% but it didn't hit me until I realized 1 in 10 Californians don't have a job. And I may be among them come the spring months.

Breten said...

Hey bud! I am glad to see that you didn't lose your job. This is a scary time to be job searching all around. Anna has been looking for a different job, but it is hard to do so when the market is flooded with people who have been laid off!

I am glad to see you posting again. I finally got google reader up and going so I can track blogs. I suck at keeping in touch so this lets me see how you guys are doing. Give your hubby a hug from me next time you see him!

I just got back from Vancouver where I was doing anti homophobia training for Christian school teachers all week. My body is still on West Coast time but life still goes full speed. I am taking tomorrow and Friday as Rest/Research/Reflection days which will be nice.

While I was out west I was asked to teach a one week intensive class on adolescent sexuality next spring at a Bible College in BC....the weeks they want me to do it happen to coincide with the Winter Olympics. Can't decide whether that is a good or bad thing.

Anyways, peace and love