Reps. Bush, Cleaver Seek Answers to Stop GKN Aerospace Plant Closure

WASHINGTON, June 1, 2022 – U.S. Reps. Cori Bush (D-Mo.) and Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) are asking GKN Aerospace CEO David Paja and GKN President of Defense Shawn Black for answers and requesting their support and assistance in saving approximately 1,000 family-sustaining jobs at GKN Aerospace in Hazelwood, Mo.

“The recent announcement that the facility would close next year came as a surprise for our local community, particularly given the risk of losing hundreds of good-paying jobs in the process,” write Reps. Bush and Cleaver in a letter to GKN leadership. “Given the impact, this would have on families and our economy, our top priority is to see what can be done to keep these jobs in St. Louis.” 

GKN Aerospace recently announced plans to completely shut down this facility by the end of 2023, with layoffs commencing in mid-2022. Workers at the facility, many of whom are U.S. military veterans, have devoted their lives to proudly producing world-class aerospace components.

IAM Local 387 (District 837) members currently produce aircraft parts for a wide variety of U.S. Defense Department platforms, including the F-15, F-18A, CH-53, and Advanced Programs. The facility was previously owned by Boeing Co. but was purchased by GKN in 2001. In 2018, GKN was purchased by the British parent company Melrose Industries.

“The IAM will provide the necessary resources to make sure all workers at this GKN facility in Hazelwood receive information from the company,” said IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr. “Our members have worked years to make this company a major supplier in the aerospace industry. The IAM will work to educate our elected officials on Capitol Hill on the importance of keeping this facility open and maintaining this highly skilled workforce.”

“The IAM appreciates Reps. Bush and Cleaver for standing up for our members at GKN,” said IAM Midwest General Vice President Steve Galloway. “We are trying to find the answers to keep this facility open, especially since it plays a huge role in keeping our nation safe. IAM District 837 is fully engaged with the entire Missouri Congressional Delegation and will continue to have discussions with state and local elected officials. Our union will fight to ensure IAM members can continue their careers at GKN Aerospace.”

“IAM District 837 is grateful that Reps. Bush and Cleaver are requesting information that our members, other families of Hazelwood, and the surrounding communities need to make major decisions for their future,” said IAM District 837 President and Directing Business Representative Tom Boelling. “We hope that we can keep this plant open and continue to keep our nation safe.”

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) has reached out to other Missouri politicians to ask for their support and assistance in saving approximately 1,000 family-sustaining jobs at GKN Aerospace in Hazelwood, Mo.