The community reacts to layoffs at Shell Convent Refinery

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CONVENT, La. (WGNO) — In St. James Parish, Ken Tureaud is surprised by the news that the Shell Convent Refinery is shutting down operations permanently and laying off a little more than one thousand workers.

“I feel for the people from the bottom of my heart, deep in my heart because they got families to take care of. There is not telling what responsibilities they have to take care of without a job,” Tureaud said.

Operations are being shut down due to fuel demand being hammered because of Covid-19.

“This area is supposed to be the richest parish in the State of Louisiana, but they’ve got a lot to show me,” he said.

Tureaud’s been a working man in Convent all his life. As a heavy equipment operator he says it has been tough to find work here.

“Applying for jobs and still couldn’t get jobs that I was looking to get. Not just to make money, but to do something that I love doing,” he said.

But he wants to offer hope to those workers from the Shell Convent Refinery who are now left without jobs.

“For me it was never easy. I never gave up. I prayed to the good Lord and let him take me where I needed to go,” Tureaud said.

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