Finding jobs for those impacted by the closure of Drs. Foster & Smith

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RHINELANDER, Wis. (WSAW) -- "It's going to effect 289 employees and this should all commence by the 10th of March," explained Stacey Johnson who is the Executive Director for the Oneida County Economic Development.

Johnson said it has been a collaborative effort between federal, state and local officials trying to help those that will lose their jobs.

"It's a scary thing these are people's lives that are effected it's our community but it can absolutely lead to other opportunities," said Johnson.

Johnson added the Department of Workforce Development's Rapid Response team will help those effected find job opportunities.

"So they come into an area like ours and it is just kind of like a set schedule of events that they have working with community leaders and with the company itself. To make sure that those same individuals have access to job retraining, help with unemployment, insurance and whatever it might be," said Johnson.

Johnson said Petco has also hired a company with the same goals in mind.

The city of Rhinelander released a statement saying they pledge their resources to those who have been displaced by this news.

Governor Tony Evers said the closure is very concerning but he says he will do what he can to help. "I'll work with Executive Director Hogan of the WEDC and see if there is any opportunities here. I am not sure the company's decision is final but we are certainly going to explore that," said Evers.

The job meeting will be on January 15, 2019 at 1pm in the Council Chambers at Rhinelander City Hall.