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      200 lose jobs at Shaw Industries plant in Tifton

      Approximately 200 workers will lose their jobs at Shaw Industries Plant WK in Tifton in the next month.

      The company has decided to reduce its workforce primarily because of the downturn in the housing industry. Shaw Industries Group, Inc., announced its decision to reduce employees at the spun yarn facility in Tifton in a press release Wednesday.

      The demand for interior finishes, including carpet and other flooring products, remains at reduced levels due to the continuing difficulties of the housing sector. During these times, customer preference is evolving, creating shifts in demand to carpet product types other than those made with spun yard. The reduction of the workforce at Plant WK is an unfortunate but necessary step in order to balance the company TMs production with the existing and future customer demand, the press release stated.

      The company closed one of its Tifton plants in August 2006 and 228 people lost their jobs with the company then. The two plants were combined and with Wednesday TMs announced layoffs, approximately 370 people will remain employed at the plant.

      Fitzgerald TMs Shaw Industries plant, which had been in operation since 1983, closed in November 2007. The company recently announced the expansion of its filament yarn facility in Calhoun.

      Tifton-Tift County Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Brad Day said Wednesday that the Chamber will meet Friday with the First Focus Crisis Team, composed of representatives from Moultrie Tech, the Tiftarea Human Resources Council, the Georgia Department of Economic Development and area temporary employment agencies. He added that he had met with Shaw General Manager Donnie Robertson earlier in the day and that the chamber had been visiting the company regularly.