Hostess Bankruptcy Hits Home, St Pete Husband Laid Off After 14 Years

12:44 AM, Nov 19, 2012   |    comments
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - While some people may be in a frenzy, since Hostess Inc. announced they are going out of business, for others, it's about more than a lack of snacks. For one Bay Area wife in particular, it means her husband has lost his job. Along with that comes a lot of uncertainty for their family, especially with the upcoming Holiday Season.

Andrea Dupuis said her husband, Michael, worked for Hostess for 14 years. He drove the snacks and bread to customers, stocked shelves around the area, and also did some sales. She said her husband was told Friday when he went to work at the facility along 49th Street in Pinellas Park that he was laid off effective that same day.

"Was a shock. We knew something was happening, but we didn't know when it was going to happen," said Andrea.

The Hostess company - weighed down by debt, management turmoil, rising labor costs and the changing tastes of America - decided on Friday that it no longer could make it through a conventional Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring. Instead, it's asking the court for permission to sell assets and go out of business.

Dupuis said her husband never went on strike. He worked until that Friday. His job was the main source of the St Pete families' household income. Andrea goes to school and works only part time. Also a concern, soon the family will have no health insurance. The Dupuis' youngest child suffers from cerebral palsy, and their oldest has a form of autism.

"It's going to be rough. It's going to be very rough," said Dupuis.

The families' Christmas tree may already be up, but the Holiday Season itself is a big unknown.

"Everyone says that something better will come along. That a blessing in disguise will show up. Well, I'm just hoping that that blessing comes soon," said Dupuis.

Dupuis' said she hopes to pick up some extra hours at work to help make ends meet while her husband searches for another job.

As for Hostess, the company is expected to be in bankruptcy court Monday. Other companies are interested in bidding for at least pieces of it.

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