Jackson prepares for potential layoffs

POSTED: Thursday, May 6, 2010 - 10:11am

UPDATED: Friday, June 4, 2010 - 12:00am

Massive layoffs are expected at three of Louisiana's mental health facilities.

State officials made the decision to deal with a $50 million dollar budget shortfall.

The Eastern Louisiana Mental system in Jackson will be the hardest hit.

The Department of Health and Hospitals says a total of 150 positions are slated to be eliminated from Eastern.

DHH says that'll only affect 70-100 jobs. The rest will be lost to attrition.

Officials say some of those positions wont be needed as the state begins to focus its finances on moving mental patients out of hospitals and into community based services like group homes.

DHH says a private company will run a few beds in Eastern...and it'll be looking to hire.

State mental health facilities in Mandeville and Pineville are also expected to eliminate about 60 jobs combined.

DHH says if the layoff plan are approved cuts could come as soon as July.