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Confer sees the benefits of hiring refugees

Confer Plastics

North Tonawanda based Confer Plastics has expanded its product line and workforce with the help of low-cost hydropower. Company vice president, Bob Confer says, the allocation through the ReCharge New York program made it cost effective to invest more than $3 million in new equipment to make kayaks and swimming pool products.

Confer says most of the 48 new employees hired in recent months are Burmese refugees.

"I found that the Burmese have an exceptional work ethic - where they do not miss work at all. They want to come to work. And they are consistently working. They're always picking up the voluntary overtime that we have available to them because they want to succeed and they want to live out the American Dream. They are some of the very best workers that we have," Confer said.

Most of the newly created positions are for entry-level machine operators. He says the Trump Administration's image of refugees  is bothersome.