Local News

Hardee's Layoffs Not Limited to Restaurant Staff

Posted June 5, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— Rumors of the Hardee's layoffs have been circulating for quite a while in Rocky Mount. Many people expected something to happen once the sale of the fast food chain goes through next month. However, it's not the lower level employees who are worrying. Middle management may soon be looking for other jobs.

It didn't take long for the founders of Hardee's to turn a small restaurant into one of the largest fast food chains. Now it appears the business that jump started the Rocky Mount economy in the 60's to face big layoffs.

A Security Exchange Commission document says CKE will replace many management jobs with its own people when it buys Hardee's in July. That could mean hundreds of corporate layoffs.

The Rocky Mount Chamber of Commerce hopes to convince CKE to spare some of the local talent a trip to the unemployment line. Chamber President Jim Fairchild believes Hardee's is full of valuable resources that shouldn't go unnoticed.

The news is catching many residents off guard. They expected lay-offs but not this soon. Derrick Spruill is one of the people who is shocked. Spruill says there are many people who work at Hardee's, and right now he doesn't see too many other local places for those people who are laid off to go for another job.

Economists say it will take time, but they expect Rocky Mount's growth to continue in spite of the downsizing that could become official as soon as next month.

Local business instructor Pravin Shukla expects the city to rebound from whatever loss it suffers. Shukla says there's more to the area than tobacco and Hardee's. Life will go on.

A lot of people hope they don't have to go on without Hardee's or at least CKE, the company that is buying Hardee's. The Chamber of Commerce plans to make CKE welcome, and perhaps convince the company to keep as many warm bodies employed as possible.