Local News

Easley Seeks Emergency Grant For Textile Workers

Posted July 31, 2003 2:17 a.m. EDT

— Gov. Mike Easley has appealed to U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Elaine Chao to expedite the state's application for a National Emergency Grant.

The grant application was submitted on June 23, 2003.

"With yesterday's announcement that Pillowtex is filing for bankruptcy and closing its doors, North Carolina lost nearly 5,000 jobs in one fell swoop," Easley said Thursday. "This is in addition to the significant losses we have been experiencing since 2001. These laid-off textile workers need assistance, and they need it now. The federal government must take immediate action."

Easley is seeking $19 million in federal funding to assist laid-off workers in maintaining their health insurance coverage by filling in the gap between eligibility and the availability of federal payments.

Easley also is working to find an affordable health care insurance option for the people who have lost their jobs as a result of federal trade policy.

Easley's letter to Chao was sent late Wednesday afternoon.