A DeRidder company lays off 105 people

By Adam Hooper - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - They are cutting back. The Boise paper mill in DeRidder is having to make some layoffs. So far 95 hourly employees and 10 salary employees have lost their jobs. One big reason for these cutbacks is that fewer people are reading the newspaper. A press release sent out by Boise Inc. on April 27th, states, "The drastic decline in newsprint demand is an external factor that none of us can control. Indefinitely idling the machine minimizes our costs while preserving our future options."

"I had to get out and start my own business," said Jason Martin.

Jason Martin was formerly employed by the Boise paper mill, but  he was one of the unfortunate 95. He now owns his own lawn service. This is something he never expected.

"You never really know this is going to happen. You hear of it happening to other people but this time it has affected me," said Jason Martin.

Timber is a multi-million dollar a year industry for DeRidder. And with the recent cutbacks and layoffs at the Boise paper mill, it has many residents wondering what is next.

"They are having problems selling their product so they do not need as much wood as they used to," said William Smith.

William smith is the owner of Smity's Barber Shop in DeRidder, and some of his customers are saying, this does not leave many options for residents of DeRidder.

"If you work in DeRidder you are either in the Woods, or at Fort Polk. There is not a lot of industry here. Lumber is the industry," said DeRidder resident, Darryl Fontenot.

An industry that has long lasting and far reaching affects on the community.