More than 600 workers at Sikorsky Aircraft were notified Friday that they were being laid off.
The majority of the job losses will be at the company's facility in Stratford. Sikorsky, a division of United Technologies Corp., employs about 8,200 people in Connecticut.
In making the announcement, Sikorsky cited “challenging and unstable economic conditions.”
"This workforce reduction will occur over the next several weeks and follow significant cost reduction actions that the company has already taken," Sikorsky spokesman Paul Jackson said in a statement, according to NBC Connecticut. "These decisions are always difficult to make but necessary to protect the company’s competitiveness and future."
News of the layoff came a day after Sikorsky announced it had landed a $110 million maintenance and support services contract for more than 360 aircraft operated by the Chief of Naval Air Training (CNATRA).
It also prompted reaction from state Sen. Kevin Kelly (R-21), whose district includes Stratford.
“I am extremely disappointed that Sikorsky will be eliminating so many jobs here in Connecticut. Hundreds of families will be negatively impacted by this decision, and my heart goes out to these individuals. Our community will suffer greatly from this loss."
“Right now my top concern is to help the displaced workers," Kelly said. "But we also must look at the bigger issues at play. Connecticut’s economy is suffering and our job market is shrinking. When a layoff of this scale occurs, it becomes clear that Connecticut is in trouble. If our employers cannot prosper, neither can our people.”
Kelly will be sending a letter to Department of Labor Commissioner Glen Marshall expressing his concerns and requesting that the department’s Rapid Response Team be dispatched to educate the workers about training opportunities, job search assistance and unemployment benefits, a release from the senator's office states.