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Amtrak To Close Riverside Call Center, Lay Off 550 Workers

RIVERSIDE (CBSLA) – Amtrak is set to close a call center in Riverside and let go of 550 employees there.
In an email sent to workers Wednesday, Amtrak announced it was closing the Riverside reservation center, according to the Press-Enterprise newspaper. The closure will take effect Jan. 18.
Tim Griffin, Amtrak chief market officer, wrote in the email that the closure was due to the fact that 90 percent of Amtrak customers now book reservations online.
“At our busiest time, only 25 percent of our agents are on the phone at the same time,” Griffin wrote, according to the Press-Enterprise.
The call center’s operations will be consolidated with a call center in Philadelphia and the Riverside property will be sold.
“From an operational efficiency and cash perspective, it is better to have many people at one location than smaller groups of people at multiple locations,” Griffin wrote.
However, union leaders told the Press-Enterprise that they believe Amtrak is contracting with a third-party company in Florida, whose employees are being paid around minimum wage.
Amtrak representatives would not publicly comment on the report, the Press-Enterprise said.

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