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Some workers say Carrier faces low morale, absenteeism at factory kept open by Trump: report
Several employees at Indiana's Carrier factory say the facility is at risk of shuttering again because of low morale and rampant absenteeism, despite President Trump's efforts which helped keep the facility open.
The New York Times reported Friday that multiple employees and union officials have complained about rising absenteeism, which has led to the factory missing quotas and even shutting down production early.
Workers interviewed by the Times agreed that the absenteeism, the Times reported, is linked to Carrier's decision almost two years ago to shutter the factory. Many said they feel as if their jobs could disappear, regardless of their conduct.
Carrier, however, stated that absenteeism had not increased. A representative told The Hill in an email that the company is "proud" of the work that staff at the Indiana plant do for the company.
"We are proud of the great work being done by our Carrier employees at our Indianapolis plant, a Center of Excellence for gas furnace production. We recently added a new gas furnace production line and continue to make investments in the facility, including skills training for our employees and product improvements," a spokesperson said.
The representatives also stated that the company was adding around 150 new jobs to the plant since Trump's deal to save the factory.
Yet those workers interviewed by the Times say no-shows are creating another problem: Workers now worry that those who have ceased showing up for work regularly are endangering the plant's future.
"People aren't coming to work, which is sad because we really need these jobs," Nicole Hargrove, a worker at the plant, told the Times. "They had a chance to prove that staying was good, but this is ruining it for everybody. It's killing us. It's pushing us out the door that much sooner."
"People still don't trust Carrier," added Paul Roell, a 19-year veteran of the plant. "They still have the warehouses and the factory in Mexico, and they can move down whenever. We all know that Carrier has the money to do whatever they want."
The problems have boiled over on internal union Facebook pages accessed by the Times, where the plant's workers complain about violations of the factory's family medical leave policy.
"When they shut the doors, guess who will be crying the most, the ones who don't come to work," reads a post from July 18.
Trump took credit in 2016 for keeping the plant open after Carrier announced it would shut down the factory and lay off roughly 1,000 jobs.
The company reached an agreement with Trump to keep the plant open in exchange for half a million per year in state income tax refunds and about about $200,000 a year to retrain workers from the state of Indiana.