NY Red Cross Drops 401(k) Match

The American Red Cross of Greater New York has joined the list of firms dropping or suspending 401(k) matches because of the economic downturn.

The New York Times reported that the Red Cross chapter has discontinued its match, halted all salary increases and bonuses, and laid off a quarter of its 186-person staff.

The news report said the layoffs are expected to save $3 million to $4 million and eliminate positions across the board, including senior administrative staff members, emergency dispatchers, and employees who run training classes from local Red Cross offices.

“We scoured all of our expenses and looked for every opportunity to reduce them,” Terry Bischoff, the chief executive of the chapter, told the Times. “We love our employees, they’re great; we value every one of them. We’ve worked very hard to have the number of layoffs as small as it could be.”

According to the news report, the Greater New York chapter is the largest Red Cross unit in the country, and dispatches workers to respond to emergencies—more than 3,000 a year—in all five boroughs of New York City and four counties in the lower Hudson Valley.