Cliffs Recalling Laid-Off Mine Workers

Cliffs Natural Resources still has a long way to go to get its Marquette County mines back to normal.

But younger employees are getting a bit of a break.

More than 100 of them are on their way back after layoffs.

The Empire and Tilden Mines will still be at half-capacity.

Some of Cliffs’ more experienced people agreed to voluntary layoffs, to allow less senior people to return.

Some others who were slated to retire by the end of the year also agreed to a layoff.

104 workers will be back for 9 weeks.

Cliffs spokesperson Dale Hemmila says not only will going back to work help them stabilize their immediate financial situations, it’ll extend their unemployment benefits.

He also says the 9 weeks will allow some of them to cross the 2-year mark in tenure that’s needed to collect supplemental unemployment, should there be a need to lay them off again.

Hemmila says it’s a win-win situation.

The more senior workers will essentially get an extended summer vacation.

And they’ll still get most of their regular pay while they’re on it.