Pictou County residents are dealing with another devastating blow after learning a local call centre will be closing its doors.

The Convergys call centre in New Glasgow will close in September, putting close to 300 people out of work.

Employees say they were shocked by Tuesday’s announcement.

“When I came to work this morning, I had no inkling that this place was going to shut down. At 11:30 I was told,” says Gerry Crouse, who has worked at Convergys for nine years.

“We may have to uproot and go out west, find work, because…there’s not going to be any jobs around. There’s going to be 300 people out of work end of September.”

“People were crying. I feel their pain too because, you know, it’s been their life here at Convergys,” says Emile Onias, who has been employed with Convergys for two years.

“I don’t know what I’m going to do,” says Sue Cooper, who has worked at the call centre for seven years. “There’s no jobs here. I just moved into a new house and things were starting to look pretty good for us, but not anymore.”

The announcement comes exactly three months after Michelin Canada announced it was cutting 500 jobs in Pictou County by the end of this month, with more cuts next summer.

“It’s another devastating blow to our local economy, not only here in the town of New Glasgow, but also county-wide and provincially as well,” says New Glasgow Mayor Barry MacMillan.

Company officials say moving the New Glasgow work to other Convergys locations is strictly a business decision.

Local business owners say it will have a devastating effect on the community and the employees.

“The people who work there get benefits, which is important,” says Jack Kyte of the Pictou County Chamber of Commerce. “They receive training. It’s a chance for them to get ahead in life and to lose that is sad.”

A company spokesperson in Ohio says some employees may be offered a chance to work at home, while others may apply to work at Convergys locations in Ontario or Cape Breton.

This is the second closure of a Convergys call centre in the Maritimes in recent months. About 130 people lost their jobs when the call centre in Dartmouth closed on Dec. 31.

The New Glasgow call centre opened in 2001. It will officially close Sept. 28.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Dan MacIntosh