Aviation industry in Wichita reeling with layoffs

WICHITA, Kansas – For more than half a decade, the aviation industry in Wichita has been reeling with layoffs.

KSN started exploring the numbers for Hawker Beechcraft first.

More than 500 were laid off in 2008, and the next year, the company shed more than 2,000 jobs.

In 2010, 350 were let go.

A year later, more than 200 were laid off in Salina as management closed the facility.

The next year, Hawker Beechcraft laid off more than 800 workers, but had to eventually file for bankruptcy protection.

Overall, employment numbers are down from 7,500 in 2008 to around 3,500 right now.

As bad as those numbers are, Cessna’s paint a darker picture.

In 2008, more than 700 were let go.

But as the economy continued to tank in 2009, the company slashed its workforce nearly in half, laying off more than 6,000 employees and closed the much-anticipated Columbus project.

The next year more than a 1,000 were given pink slips.

In the years since those large layoffs, the company has offered voluntary and early retirement programs.

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