Sikorsky to lay off 3 percent of workers

Spokesman Paul Jackson said the layoffs were being made because of “the tightening global business environment and the expected U.S. Department of Defense budget reductions. The company must adjust its overall cost structure accordingly to remain competitive.”

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Defense contractors are bracing for massive cuts to the Pentagon budget, which are already at $350 billion and could grow by another $600 billion from sequestration. Defense hawks in Congress have vowed to reverse the automatic cuts.

The White House last week announced it was sending a dozen Sikorsky-made Blackhawk S-70i helicopters to Brunei in a $325 million sale.

Jackson said in an email that Sikorsky has just come off a period of growth and is making cuts to adjust for “forecasted changes in our business environment.”

“We are hoping the voluntary separation offer will significantly soften the impact,” he said.