October 12th, 2017 by

Belleville ready to help Sears staff find new work


(File photo: Tim Durkin/Quinte News)

Officials say the city of Belleville stands ready to assist with the transition of Sears employees who will lose their jobs when the company closes its doors in a few weeks.

The closure affects employees at Sears in the Quinte Mall as well as at the Sears warehouse.

Mayor Taso Christopher says Economic Development staff and the Chamber of Commerce have met  to formalize a plan to ensure Sears employees have the opportunity to quickly transition to other work.

In a news release, Mayor Christopher says city staff have a plan to help affected employees find new work and, if needed, the city and its partners, can help market the available retail space and the large warehouse to ensure a new employer is attracted.

Sears will be seeking court approval on Friday to liquidate all its remaining assets.

Thousands of Sears employees stand to lose their jobs, including those at the Sears store at Quinte Mall and at the Warehouse/Call Centre.

Karen Poste, Manager of Economic and Strategic Initiatives says that Sears employees have in-demand skills and the buildings feature great amenities and superb locations. The process to transition people and properties will be supported by the entire community and economic development will take a lead role in coordinating local efforts.

Chamber of Commerce President Derrick Morgan says the Chamber and many local businesses are actively hiring and looking for new people to join their teams.