State Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond said today that the Georgia Department of Labor will provide assistance to employees who lose their jobs at Shaw Industries in Catoosa County.

Shaw Industries has announced plans to close their manufacturing facility, located at 716 Industrial Blvd. in Ringgold. Approximately 430 workers will be affected.

Thurmond spoke today in Ringgold to the Catoosa County Chamber of Com-merce and assured local business and government leaders of the department’s commitment to help and explained the assistance the department will provide.

“The layoffs at Shaw Industries in Ringgold will create a difficult situation for the work-ers and their families,” Thurmond said. “I want them to know they’re not alone in dealing with this economic crisis. The Georgia Department of Labor is committed to helping them find new jobs, or access training and educational opportunities to prepare for new careers.”

The labor department is scheduled to open a transition center at the plant on Tuesday, Sept. 15. In order to cover all shifts, the center will be open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Tuesdays and from noon to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays. Employee information sessions in both English and Spanish have been scheduled for day and night shifts on Sept. 14-15.

Thurmond said the labor department provides a wide range of transitional services to laid-off workers. These options include: on-site employee information sessions describing services available through the Georgia Department of Labor, assistance in filing claims for unemployment compensation, re-employment services, access to retraining opportunities, skills assessment and correlation with available employment opportunities, special work-shops on career options and resume writing and interviewing skills.

The Georgia Department of Labor conducts job search workshops, career counseling, and provides resource centers in each office. Some job seekers may also be eligible for occupa-tional/skills training, on-the-job training, General Education Development (GED) prepara-tion and testing, and supportive services such as child-care assistance, transportation assis-tance and meals while enrolled in full-time training.

Catoosa County is served by the Georgia Department of Labor’s Northwest Georgia Ca-reer Center, located at 96 Stuart Rd. in Fort Oglethorpe. The office telephone number is (706) 861-1990. However, affected workers may get assistance from any of the department’s 53 ca-reer centers statewide. A listing of career centers is available on line at