L3 Harris Technologies unexpectedly lays off dozens in Brevard County

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — One of Brevard County’s largest employers laid off dozens of employees Thursday morning.


L3 Harris Technologies plans to cut five percent of its employees worldwide, including in Brevard County. The defense contractor and aerospace company refused to say exactly how many employees were affected.

It has more than 7,000 employees in Brevard County alone.

L3 Harris says it had to make the decision in order to streamline their operations. However, employees tell Channel 9, the company could have given them advanced noticed.

“No heads up, nothing,” said Chris Karsten.

Karsten says he and dozens of his co-workers were blindsided by the layoffs. Karsten is a father of and disabled veteran who was injured during the Iraq War in 2003.

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He’s worked as a software configuration manager at L3Harris Technologies for the past five years.

That was until yesterday, where in a 10 minute zoom call, he was laid off.

“I lost my internet access to my company, laptop and email was gone within 10 minutes. I don’t even get to say goodbye to my co-workers, which was the worst thing,” Karsten said.

L3 Harris would not say how many jobs are affected or give a breakdown of where those jobs are located.

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As to why the layoffs happened, the company said in a statement: “L3Harris continues to focus on operational performance and delivering on our LHX NeXt commitments, including $1 billion in gross cost savings over the next three years. With this in mind, and having identified a series of opportunities to streamline our operations, we have made the difficult decision to right-size our workforce. As our industry’s Trusted Disruptor, we will continue to think differently about how we deliver value to both our customers and our shareholders.”

“We lost a lot of money, we lost a six figure income,” Karsten said. “That’s the livelihood for my family. You know, we lost all of our health benefits, dental, vision.”

The company also refused to say why they did not give advanced noticed to employees like Karsten.

“I wish you would have given us a little bit more notice,” Karsten said. “We understand that company, you know, has their needs to for stocks and dividends. But you know, a lot of people are just want maybe more time to find a job.”

As of now, Florida’s unemployment rate sits at 3.1%.

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Sean Snaith, director of the Institute for Economic Forecasting at the University of Central Florida, says he does expect the labor market to soften over the course of the year but does not anticipate a downturn. Snaith says there is a possibility of a recession.

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