New Era celebrates safe environment

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Business analysts in New York have painted a gloomy picture of this nation’s economy for more than two years now. Maybe some of those analysts should make a stop in Demopolis.

Scatter along the outside of the walls of New Era Cap Co. on Monday were buckets of shrimp, crab claws and catfish. More importantly, 389 employees and city officials celebrated a company that bunks all theories about a poor economy.

The seafood buffet on Monday celebrated two milestones for employees at the Demopolis industry. First, the company has been in operation for five years now. Secondly, and maybe most importantly, the plant has not lost a minute’s time from an employee accident.

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Industry outsiders may not appreciate a company that can go five years without losing work time due to an injury. But Williams knows how important it is to have employees who never miss a day’s work.

Credit for having a safe work environment could be passed around liberally. Williams, however, credits a group of employees from making the biggest difference in the safety of his plant.

Having a safe work environment has helped New Era become one of the top, if not the top, manufacturers of baseball caps in America. And the Demopolis plant leads the pack.

The looks on employees’ faces on Monday made it clear they feel honored to have such a good company to work for. But what made the day more special, on top of the seafood buffet, was the perk Williams gave every worker at New Era.

With or without the $40,000, New Era &045;&045; as evidenced Monday &045;&045; has done plenty to infuse the local economy.

In fact, New Era expanded more than two years ago, and Caldwell said there’s even more room to grow, if needed.