Trade assistance can help IP workers

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 4, 2003

As International Paper enters its final days in Natchez, officials at the Natchez office of the state Employment Security Commission are worried that not all employees know about the benefits available to them.

The employment office, through Trade Adjustment Assistance, can offer a variety of generous means of assistance to displaced workers.

For some people, that could mean finding help that would enable them to stay in Natchez.

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Workers can qualify for up to 104 weeks of training approved by the employment office &045; which translates to five semesters of school. They can also receive travel money to interview for jobs out of town and up to 90 percent in moving expenses.

But there is a time limit for receiving the help, and the employment office doesn’t know if it will be able to reach everyone.

The employees at the Natchez mill have been wonderful workers over the years &045; and they have also been wonderful citizens in our community.

They deserve the help they can receive through the trade assistance program, and we urge everyone interested to apply.

If you know someone losing a job, tell them to contact the employment security commission office to apply for assistance.

The office has a wonderful array of resources to help &045; and we certainly hope it will help many workers stay in Natchez. But employees have to make the first contact in order to receive aid.