Tariffs Are Good for Workers

From the AFL-CIO

Working people have seen two camps inside the White House: one for Wall Street and corporate CEOs and one for workers. The plans announced by President Trump to crack down on predatory trade practices show the rise of the worker camp.

The plan to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum is long overdue and good for America because we need new economic rules that allow working families and our communities to thrive.

Wall Street CEOs and multinational corporations say the tariffs will start a trade war, but the truth is Wall Street has been waging a war on working people for decades.

The results have been devastating. As America has lost our industrial capacity with each shuttered plant and closed production line, workers lose jobs and communities lose a tax base and an economic cornerstone.

64,000: That’s how many good-paying jobs in America’s steel industry have been lost since 2000 because of predatory steel practices by our nation’s trading partners, which also has resulted in the loss of nearly one-quarter of America’s steel-making capacity.

Working people who still have jobs often face lower pay and worse benefits, while local roads, parks, libraries and schools face cuts from lost funding.

Trade enforcement isn’t a trade war. It’s a smart way to ensure a fair economy that protects our freedoms and allows us to join together and negotiate with our employers for a better life, no matter what country we live in or what industry we work in.

The steel and aluminum tariffs announced by President Donald Trump are good for working people because they punish the predatory practices of countries that use lax trade rules to hurt American companies and working people.

“This is a great first step toward addressing trade cheating, and we will continue to work with the administration on rewriting trade rules to benefit working people,” said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.


Posted In: Union Matters

Union Matters

Human Service Workers at Persad Center Vote to Join the USW

From the USW

Workers at Persad Center, a human service organization that serves the LGBTQ+ and HIV/AIDS communities of the Pittsburgh area, voted last week to join the United Steelworkers (USW) union.

The unit of 24 workers, ranging from therapists and program coordinators to case managers and administrative staff, announced their union campaign as the Persad Staff Union last month and filed for an election with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).

“We care about our work and the communities we serve,” said Johanna Smith, Persad’s Development, Communications, and Events Associate. “We strongly believe this work and our connections to our clients will only improve now that we will be represented by a union.”

The Persad workers join the growing number of white-collar professionals organizing with the USW, especially in the Pittsburgh region. Their membership is also in line with the recent work the Steelworkers have been doing to engage LGBTQ+ members and improve contract language regarding issues that affect their lives.

“Workplaces are changing and evolving, and the labor movement is changing and evolving along with that,” said USW Vice President Fred Redmond, who oversees the union’s LGBTQ+ Advisory Committee as well as the USW Health Care Workers Council. “This campaign gives us an opportunity to diversify our great union while uplifting and empowering a group of workers who give their all for others.”


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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work