WANGARANG Industries will need to find additional income of more than $300,000 a year when the Electrolux plant closes by 2016.
Wangarang provides supported employment and training for people living with a disability in Orange and the central west.
Chairman Mike Crowley said Wangarang’s component assembly contract with Electrolux was ideal for employees who were not suited to outdoor work.
He appealed to any businesses who may be able to offer similiar work to fill the gap.
“We already have some other contracts, but the work with Electrolux makes up 15 per cent of our income,” Mr Crowley said.
“We are not funded by government so we have to source work ourselves to keep us financially viable.”
He said the contract with Electrolux also helped the organisation keep costs down.
“With the type of indoor work we do for Electrolux we are required to provide one supervisor for between seven and 10 employees,” he said.
“However, with the outdoor work it is one supervisor to three employee.”
Mr Crowley said Wangarang was in the process of expanding its Forest Road facility and consolidating its operations when the news of the Electrolux closure came through.
Among the work carried out by Wangarang employees is labelling of wine bottles and document scanning, as well as repairs to linen from the Orange Linen Service.
“But recently the work from the linen service has been falling away,” he said.
Mr Crowley said Wangarang was grateful for the support received from businesses and individuals in the Orange community.
“The vignerons have been particularly good to us, as employees stick the labels on wine bottles, but the more contracts we can get in the community the better off we will be,” he said.
Mr Crowley said other work to replace the Electrolux contract could include packaging items for business and industry.
Wangarang currently employs 125 people with a variety of intellectual and physical disabilities.
As a disability services provider Wangarang Industries has supported employees working in the following areas:
* scanning and shredding of documents
* gardening and garden construction
* timber product manufacture
* light manufacturing
* nursery production
* bulk mailing and packaging
* commercial cleaning
* Electrolux component assembly including shelving and generators