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TRW Resumes Blood Drives at Local Plant

October 13, 1987|RALPH VARTABEDIAN | Times Staff Writer

TRW said Monday that it will resume American Red Cross blood drives at its Redondo Beach facility, ending a controversial suspension of the drives that had upset some company employees.

A statement issued Monday by the Cleveland-based aerospace firm said the cancellation was the result of a "working level misunderstanding" and that TRW management has "cleared up the problem."

The company earlier had told the American Red Cross that it had canceled a scheduled blood drive at the large facility and would not schedule future drives. Last week, Red Cross officials had expressed concern at the potential loss of the large amount of blood that TRW employees donate.

American Red Cross officials were told that the blood drives were being canceled because the company did not want to bill the Pentagon for the employee labor time associated with donating blood. The officials had expressed concern about TRW's action last week in a Times story, which disclosed the cancellation of the blood drives.

A Red Cross official was quoted by TRW on Monday as saying: "We are glad to straighten out this misunderstanding on their blood program." TRW employees, citing humanitarian concerns, expressed outrage at the apparent cancellation of the program.

The TRW statement also said: "At no time did TRW management plan or direct cancellation of the company's long-standing blood drive program."

But the company statement acknowledged, as did a TRW spokeswoman last week, that TRW staff members had told the Red Cross that "the company would no longer participate in the Red Cross program."

Interviews with Red Cross officials last week indicated that TRW had blamed the cancellation on a company effort to reduce overhead costs. TRW signed an agreement with the Air Force last year to cut overhead costs by $100 million over a three-year period.

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