.04 Voluntary Guidelines for Employers Anticipating a Permanent Reduction in Work Force.

A. Employers facing a reduction in operations should:

(1) Meet with employee representatives regarding concessions or alternatives, or both, to closure in order to save the place and save jobs;

(2) Notify all impacted employees if a reduction in operation is required:

(a) At least 90 days before the termination date; and

(b) By written notice to each employee.

B. Termination Phase-In.

(1) If no collective bargaining agreement is in force, the employer should plan for a phase-in of the termination developing a staggered schedule of layoffs spread over the maximum time practical.

(2) If collective bargaining agreements are in force, then the employer shall implement the provisions of the agreement as the agreement pertains to termination and seniority.

C. Post Termination Benefits.

(1) Employers should consider continuing non-work-related benefits for as long as feasible following termination.

(2) Employers should consider offering laid-off employees the following benefits:

(a) Health care coverage or the option of continuing, at the employee's own expense, the employee's current health care coverage:

(i) For at least 6 months following termination, or

(ii) Until other employment is secured;

(b) Participation rights in employee credit unions; and

(c) Other special company benefits.

D. Special Termination Benefits.

(1) Employers should consider providing the following special benefits:

(a) Retraining allowances, which:

(i) Could range from $1,000 to $1,800, and

(ii) Can be utilized by any employee who both enrolls and completes a retraining program or career-related educational program;

(b) A severance pay package tied to the employee's wage level or length of employment, or both;

(c) Job search assistance or job clubs which include instruction on how to:

(i) Market employment skills,

(ii) Complete resumes/applications,

(iii) Interview,

(iv) Look for work, and

(v) Utilize labor market information.

(2) Employers may implement on-site displaced worker centers to provide a central place for the dissemination of all termination services and information.