But it's not like I'm in financial problems where people could be cut at any second, it was a one time hub cut, if they weren't at that hub then it doesn't affect them.
Even if the employee model in AWS was that sophisticated, and it's not even remotely close to that, you actually did fire a lot of people at your HQ when you close a hub. When you open a hub, you increase the employee count in your main headquarters by some 30%. And, when you close said hub and fire all the workers not needed any longer, you just fired a third of everyone in your HQ. So you actually fired a LOT more people at your HQ than you did at your hub.
That won't be forgotten ever
. In companies that are heavily-unionized in particular, layoffs are never, ever forgotten. And I speak from experience on that -- and not a week goes by where I don't hear people make excuses about doing something, or labor rules existing because of, layoffs that occurred, quite literally, decades
ago. Seniority rules the day and many employees have worked for decades with little turnover, so everyone around can remember when the cuts were made. Union chairman will point towards events in the distant past and workers will rally around that time that 'the man' screwed them all over and it will not only not be forgotten but it will be used as an excuse for agreement/policy/rule changes for decades.
Job Security and the stability of one's employer are the single most important factors in how dedicated ones employees are. Employees that feel secure in their job, that haven't seen their employer face any problems or have to lay any off, are motivated to work harder far more than paying them more. When you take that away, you virtually never
get it back if your workforce is one that tends to stay very stagnant (i.e. you're not replacing workers who experienced the 'bad times' with newer ones who still think you're a stable company because they've never experienced it). Once a company is exposed as weak, employees will likely never again have that same feeling of security that they had previously. Absolutely not in mere months, certainly not in years, and if they're lucky it'll only be a decade or two to recover.