Madigan investigates factory's sudden closure

Chris Rizo Dec. 8, 2008, 11:29am

Lisa Madigan (D)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (Legal Newsline)- Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is investigating the sudden closure of Republic Windows and Doors, Inc., the Democrat's office said Monday.

The Chicago-based company unexpectedly shut its doors last week with very little notice to employees. Workers responded by holding sit-ins to get assurances they will be paid money that they say is owed to them.

"My labor counsel has been on site at Republic today talking with employees and union representatives and we will continue our investigation working as quickly as possible to protect the employees and consumers," Madigan said. "I am extremely concerned with the actions of this company, which are having a significant impact on employees and their families."

In addition to Republic's closure, Madigan is investigating whether the company has paid workers' wages, severance, and vacation pay. There is also a question as to whether the company has returned customer deposits toward purchases from the company.

For its part, Republic has said it was forced to shut down after Bank of America cut its credit line.

The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers, which represents workers at the factory and urged Madigan to investigate, has said the company failed to give 60 days' notice required by federal law for mass layoffs.

On Monday, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich ordered the state to stop doing business with Bank of America over its refusal to loan money to the company.

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