Wednesday, March 25 was the date for a public town hall meeting that focused on the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the effort by Big Business and others to push it through Congress by a “fast track” process, which means members of Congress must vote on the 1,200 + page TPP bill with almost no debate and no ability to amend it.

Ohio AFL-CIO President Tim Burga speaks on Fast Track of TPP.

Ohio AFL-CIO President Tim Burga speaks on Fast Track of TPP.

Unions, environmental, progressive and community groups and others will participate in a public discussion of the devastating impact of Fast Track and TPP on good jobs and our communities

The TPP trade deal will send more U.S. jobs overseas, raise prescription drug prices, and allow multinational corporations to challenge any U.S. law or regulation that affects “expected future profits” in a secret, overseas court.

“Between 2000 and 2014, American manufacturing employment dropped by 4 million jobs,” said Ohio AFL-CIO President Tim Burga. “Fast-track authority and flawed trade agreements like the North American Free Trade Agreement, along with the inclusion of China in Permanent Normal Trade Relations, have blown up our import/export deficit and have led to the loss of more than 300,000 Ohio manufacturing jobs.”

Members of CWA, the AFL-CIO, Progress Ohio, Ohio Association for Retired Americans, Ohio Sustainable Business Council, Common Cause Ohio, Columbus NAACP, Sierra Club, Ohio Environmental Council, Central Ohio Worker Center, and Jobs with Justice Columbus, and concerned Columbus residents.

Speakers included Burga, Sam Gresham, Common Cause Ohio; Norm Wernet, President, Ohio Association for Retired Americans; Brian Kunkemoeller, Sierra Club; Cynthia Stewart, NAACP and others.

“The Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, would scale back hard-fought Wall Street and environmental reforms, make it easier for pharmaceutical companies to raise prescription-drug prices and reduce food-safety standards,” said Gresham. “Worse yet, it has been negotiated with no transparency.”

Click here to sign the AFL-CIO Petition to stop the Fast Track of TPP or click here to call your representative and to learn more about the harmful effects of another unfair trade deal.