The AFL-CIO released a video today showing firsthand the devastating economic impact the Trans-Pacific Partnership could have on communities across the country. When global companies move jobs offshore to take advantage of trade deals, they not only destroy jobs, they suppress wages, deprive local governments of needed resources and leave working families behind.
Last week, United Steelworkers (USW) President Leo W. Gerard testified at a U.S. Trade Representative hearing examining overcapacity in the global steel market and its impact on U.S. steelmakers. There is evidence that foreign governments are subsidizing cheap steel and selling it in the United States at unfairly low prices. Countries are able to dump their cheap steel in U.S. markets because they are undervaluing their currency when setting prices.
“Currency manipulation is at the heart of this issue, and the passage of the TPP—which doesn’t address this global problem—could kill American manufacturing for good,” Gerard said. “Like NAFTA, it offers no protection for American manufacturing or American workers. U.S. trade policy has not worked for working people or our communities, which has led to broad opposition to the TPP. It must be defeated.”
“We know the TPP is a job killer,” said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. “Our trade agreements should help to create good jobs in America and enable regular working people to succeed by working hard to get ahead. The TPP fails this goal miserably.”
“I’ve seen too many people have their lives destroyed because the jobs went away,” said Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, Council Member DeWitt Walton. “We can’t have another NAFTA. There’s too much at risk. It’s too important. What happens if TPP passes? There will be another generation of people that can’t find work.”
Allegheny County, which is featured in the video, is one of hundreds of local and state governments that have passed or introduced resolutions opposing TPP.