United Steelworkers Press Releases Feed http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/rss United Steelworkers Press Releases Feed 2017-11-08 15:13:00 -0600 AMPS en hourly 1 USW Seeks Labor Secretary’s Help in Dispute with Korean Tire Company http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-seeks-labor-secretarys-help-in-dispute-with-korean-tire-company Wed, 08 Nov 2017 15:13:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-seeks-labor-secretarys-help-in-dispute-with-korean-tire-company Kumho’s Illegal Tactics Violated Georgia Workers’ Rights

CONTACT: Ben Davis (412) 562-2501

PITTSBURGH (Nov. 8) – The United Steelworkers (USW) union is calling on the U.S. Secretary of Labor to use the labor chapter of the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement in a dispute with Kumho Tire, a Korean company.

In a letter to Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, USW International President Leo W. Gerard said that “illegal tactics by the company have effectively limited the freedom of association and effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining for the U.S. workers at the Kumho facility” in Macon, Ga.  

The union wrote to Acosta to request a formal consultation with the Korean government under the labor chapter of the trade agreement.

The USW narrowly lost an election at Kumho Tire in Macon in October. The union filed complaints with the National Labor Relations Board accusing the company of illegal conduct during the election, including the firing of a union supporter. The union representing Kumho Tire’s three plants in Korea sent messages of support to the workers at the Georgia facility.

Kumho Tire’s $450 million plant in Georgia, which supplies nearby Hyundai, Kia and Chrysler auto plants, opened in 2016.  The company, which has experienced economic difficulties, is currently controlled by a committee of creditors led by the Korean Development Bank, a Korean government entity.

An online copy of the letter can be found HERE.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors.  

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Steelworkers Endorse Mark MacKenzie for Congress http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/steelworkers-endorse-mark-mackenzie-for-congress Fri, 03 Nov 2017 14:19:26 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/steelworkers-endorse-mark-mackenzie-for-congress Contact:  Dave Wasiura, (716) 565-1720

Manchester, N.H. – The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that the union has endorsed State Representative and former New Hampshire AFL-CIO President Mark MacKenzie for Congress to fight on behalf of working families in the First Congressional District.

USW District 4 Director John Shinn credited MacKenzie for serving working families for more than 40 years, as a firefighter and a leader within the labor movement each for 25 years and now in the state legislature.

“Mark has been a tireless, visible and vocal champion of working families for decades,” Shinn said. “His leadership was instrumental in building a bipartisan coalition to defeat the so-called ‘Right to Work’ legislation brought before the New Hampshire House early this year.”

Shinn said that MacKenzie’s record of unashamed, outspoken and ultimately effective advocacy for American workers, their families and communities is too rare in Washington, D.C., and that the USW is proud to be the first major union to endorse the campaign to put him there.

“As a nation, if we want to create good jobs, a modern energy policy, address our crumbling infrastructure and expand the middle class,” he said, “then we need to elect representatives who know how to make it happen.”

“When we stand together in solidarity and fight together in unity for policies based on fairness and justice, we cannot be defeated,” Shinn said. “Nobody running for Congress understands that better than Mark MacKenzie.”

The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, the auto supply and energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.

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USW: Congressional Democrats’ Better Deal Proposal Would Help Working Families by Strengthening Unions http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-congressional-democrats-better-deal-proposal-would-help-working-families-by-strengthening-unions Thu, 02 Nov 2017 09:17:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-congressional-democrats-better-deal-proposal-would-help-working-families-by-strengthening-unions Contact: Holly Hart (202) 778-4384; hhart@usw.org

(Pittsburgh) – United Steelworkers (USW) International President Leo W. Gerard issued this statement today following yesterday’s release of a white paper by Congressional Democrats outlining measures for working families to utilize collective bargaining to improve their lives. In anticipation of the release of the Republican tax plan, which would provide massive tax cuts for the wealthy at the expense of American workers, these measures have even greater significance.

Working families across America should support the latest phase of the Congressional Democrats’ “A Better Deal” as it provides a blueprint for workers to build better lives by organizing and bargaining collectively. It calls for workers to have the freedom to negotiate.

For more than three decades now, wages have been stagnant while profits and executive compensation have skyrocketed. During this time, incomes for the top 1 percent rose by 204 percent while incomes for the bottom 50 percent rose by just 1 percent.

To add further insult, the tax plan now being proposed by Republicans would provide major cuts for the wealthy at the expense of working families. These cuts will greatly increase the deficit and could lead to future cuts in essential programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

The Democratic proposal would ban state laws that undermine worker freedoms to join together and bargain. While federal law requires unions to provide equal representation to all workers in a unionized workplace, regardless of membership, 28 states have passed laws that strip workers of the resources they need to bargain for higher wages, better benefits and improved working conditions. These so-called right-to-work laws do not give anyone the right to a job. They result in lower wages and decreased access to health care and pensions for union and nonunion workers alike.

The proposal calling for the freedom to negotiate would strengthen penalties on predatory corporations that violate workers’ rights. While a growing number of workers would join a union if given a free choice, many fear retaliation for supporting one. Companies threaten to close shop in 57 percent of union elections, fire union supporters in 34 percent of elections, threaten to cut wages in 47 percent of elections, and use one-on-one supervisory meetings to threaten union supporters in 54 percent of organizing campaigns.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

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Steelworkers Ratify Three-Year Agreement at Eramet Marietta http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/steelworkers-ratify-three-year-agreement-at-eramet-marietta Wed, 01 Nov 2017 09:02:30 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/steelworkers-ratify-three-year-agreement-at-eramet-marietta CONTACT: Tony Montana (412) 562-2592

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that members of Local 0639 at Eramet’s manganese plant in Marietta, Ohio, have ratified a new, three-year contract that covers about 110 workers.

The agreement improves wages and benefits and demonstrates both parties’ commitment to the long-term future of the plant without concessions from the hourly workforce. Notably, the contract strengthens seniority language and protects jobs by maintaining limits on the company’s use of outside contractors.

USW District 1 Director David McCall praised the members of Local 0639 for standing together during the process, as well as the USW negotiating committee and their management counterparts for their work at the bargaining table.

“The solidarity of our membership gives us the strength we need to negotiate fair contracts and ensure that we are treated with respect and dignity on the job,” McCall said. “When we work in partnership with management to achieve our common goals, we can accomplish truly great results.”

USW District 1 Staff Representative John Saunders, who chairs negotiations with Eramet, said that the union and management will work together to improve productivity in Marietta as well as to address trade and environmental issues.

“Ratifying this agreement with Eramet is important to our union because the company supplies high quality manganese for many American steel producers,” Saunders said. “Even more importantly, at a time when good jobs with fair pay and benefits are disappearing at an astonishing rate, this contract provides much needed economic security and stability for our members, their families and community.”

The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.

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USW Statement on Need to Reform Renewable Fuels Standard http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-statement-on-need-to-reform-renewable-fuels-standard Fri, 27 Oct 2017 10:33:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-statement-on-need-to-reform-renewable-fuels-standard More information, contact: Roy Houseman – (202) 288-3573 or rhouseman@usw.org

The United Steelworkers (USW) today issued this statement from National Oil Bargaining Chairman Kim Nibarger after nine senators this week requested a meeting with the administration via letter to discuss imbalances created by the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) current Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) and the use of Renewable Identification Numbers (RINS) as its compliance mechanism:

“Inconsistent administration policy on the RFS threatens thousands of refinery jobs across the country. Independent refineries that provide good jobs for highly skilled workers cannot afford to keep pace as RINS have become commodities to be hoarded by the largest companies or bought and sold to the highest bidders on Wall Street.

The price of RINS spiked last week when the White House caved to pressure from the ethanol industry and other beneficiaries of the current system to reverse course on the point of obligation in the RFS.

Wild fluctuations in the market cost of RINS caused by whatever wind pushes the administration and the EPA from day to day severely hinder investment in domestic oil refining and are threatening our jobs and the communities where we live and work.

While our union often disagrees with some of the senators who signed the letter on policies that impact workers, we absolutely agree that the RFS must be reformed to reflect changes in the modern refining industry and account for the terrible health and safety record in the ethanol industry.”

The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.

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USW Affirms Devastating Consequences of Unfair Trade, Urges White House to Fight for American Workers, Communities http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-affirms-devastating-consequences-of-unfair-trade-urges-white-house-to-fight-for-american-workers-communities Wed, 18 Oct 2017 15:16:15 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-affirms-devastating-consequences-of-unfair-trade-urges-white-house-to-fight-for-american-workers-communities Contacts: Roy Houseman, (202) 288-3573 or rhouseman@usw.org
Tony Montana, (412) 562-2592 or tmontana@usw.org

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers (USW) today affirmed the disastrous effects that more than two decades of so-called “free” trade have had on American workers, their families and communities, as reported in documents leaked from the White House.

USW International President Leo W. Gerard called on the administration to put workers first in the ongoing renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and to follow through on the Department of Commerce’s Section 232 investigations into how steel and aluminum imports have damaged industries essential to national defense.

“In all of the major industrial sectors in which our union represents workers, the catastrophic social, economic and health consequences of unfair foreign trade hit our members first and hardest,” Gerard said. “We have lost millions of family supporting, community sustaining manufacturing jobs in thousands of factories that have permanently closed, and the results are predictably devastating and well documented.”

“It should be no secret that when good jobs disappear, crime rates, alcoholism, drug use, home foreclosures, divorces, suicides and depression increase, and families become less stable,” he said. “Likewise, when people lose their health insurance, they become dependent on programs like Medicaid, Social Security disability, food stamps and other types of government assistance.”

“Deindustrialization due to unfair trade means fewer families being able to afford the always-increasing cost of higher education and fewer opportunities for individuals to improve their standard of living,” Gerard said. “Now more than ever, the White House needs to act with urgency to level the playing field for American workers, invest in our country’s decaying infrastructure and create good, sustainable manufacturing jobs.”

The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.

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Joint Press Statement Leo W. Gerard, United Steelworkers (USW) International President Ken Neumann, USW Canadian National Director http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/joint-press-statement-leo-w-gerard-united-steelworkers-usw-international-president-ken-neumann-usw-canadian-national-director Thu, 12 Oct 2017 10:26:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/joint-press-statement-leo-w-gerard-united-steelworkers-usw-international-president-ken-neumann-usw-canadian-national-director CONTACTS: Roxanne Brown (202) 778-4384, rbrown@usw.org
                      Bob Gallagher (416) 544-5966, bgallagher@usw.ca

We have come together today as the NAFTA renegotiations reach a critical point. Labor leaders from Mexico, Canada and the United States were joined by progressive leaders from the U.S.  Congress and discussed the challenges and opportunities that workers face in the three countries.

The United Steelworkers (USW) is the largest industrial union in North America. We know firsthand the impact of failed trade policies. That impact has been devastating. Since NAFTA, wage inequality has worsened and wage growth has stagnated in both Canada and the United States. Workers’ economic security has been eroded. In Mexico, wages and working conditions have fallen further behind and workers’ rights are suppressed on a regular basis.

USW members in Canada and the United States and our free and independent brothers and sisters with the Los Mineros union in Mexico all fought for broad, effective and enforceable labor rights provisions in the existing NAFTA. Our calls were rejected, and the ruinous impact of NAFTA on working people has been clear.

We all want a renegotiated agreement if it will raise standards, ensure that they are enforced, and provide growth and opportunity for workers in all three countries. NAFTA has concentrated income, wealth and power in the hands of wealthy investors and corporations instead of creating good jobs and protecting the environment.  

Rules of origin, investor-state dispute settlement, currency issues, and many others need to be addressed in any renegotiated agreement. But, without significant improvements in workers’ rights provisions, there will be little progress in any updated agreement. Working people will not share in any of the benefits their work helps to create.

Last year, voters here in the United States made trade a core issue in the campaign. Our brothers and sisters in Mexico and Canada have the same aspirations. It is time for our political leaders to keep the promises that were made and not bow to the special interests and free trade ideologues.    We intend to work together. We intend to fight. And, we intend to win.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org and http://www.usw.ca

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USW: NAFTA Renegotiations Must Protect Workers’ Rights, Not Just Corporations http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-nafta-renegotiations-must-protect-workers-rights-not-just-corporations Fri, 06 Oct 2017 14:30:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-nafta-renegotiations-must-protect-workers-rights-not-just-corporations CONTACT: Roxanne Brown (202) 778-4384

(Pittsburgh) -- The United Steelworkers issued the following statement after the business community criticized the current direction of NAFTA negotiations.

Since the day NAFTA was signed into law, workers in the United States, Mexico and Canada have suffered from its impact and have hoped for its reform or repeal. 

Next week, negotiators will meet for the fourth round of talks to update its provisions and attempt to reverse the significant economic damage the agreement has caused. 

It's no surprise that business groups are concerned that NAFTA's outsourcing provisions may be dramatically altered, and that provisions might be included to develop an agreement that is fairer to workers.  

Organized labor is working with the Administration to advance proposals that will promote growth and opportunity for workers in all three countries. A deal that achieves those goals would be worthy of our support.  

Businesses have set the agenda for far too long and the result has been rising trade deficits, lost jobs, devastated communities and rising income inequality.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. 

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USW Asks South Korean Government to Stand Up for U.S. Workers’ Rights http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-asks-south-korean-government-to-stand-up-for-u-s-workers-rights Thu, 05 Oct 2017 09:36:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-asks-south-korean-government-to-stand-up-for-u-s-workers-rights CONTACT: Maria Somma: (412) 562-1992, msomma@usw.org

The United Steelworkers (USW) union has sent a letter from USW International President Leo W. Gerard to South Korean President Moon Jae-in raising concerns about Korean-based tire maker Kumho’s union-busting actions toward its workers in the United States and asking the South Korean government to intervene and ensure that the workers are free to exercise their democratic rights.

The USW filed a petition last month with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to conduct a union election for more than 300 workers at Kumho’s plant in Macon, Ga. The election is scheduled to take place next week.

Kumho Tire responded to the unionization effort in Macon by requiring workers to attend meetings in which managers have attempted to dissuade workers from joining the union. The company also has spent tens of thousands of dollars on union-busting consultants who have shared misleading and inaccurate information on an anti-union website.

“As we understand that Kumho Tire is currently under effective control of a creditors’ committee headed by the Korean Development Bank, it appears that the Government of the Republic of Korea may bear direct responsibility for the behavior of the company’s management,” Gerard wrote. “Our union is also concerned about the potential impact the actions of Kumho Tire management in the U.S. may have on the relationship between our countries in the context of current discussions over the possible renegotiation of the KORUS free trade agreement.

“We request that you communicate with Kumho Tire as soon as possible to request that their management at the Macon, Georgia plant immediately desist from all anti-union activities.”

A copy of the USW’s letter is available at: http://usw.to/2c2

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors.  For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

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International Labor Delegations Share Common Concerns at DowDuPont North American Labor Council Meeting http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/international-labor-delegations-share-common-concerns-at-dowdupont-north-american-labor-council-meeting Mon, 02 Oct 2017 11:17:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/international-labor-delegations-share-common-concerns-at-dowdupont-north-american-labor-council-meeting CONTACT: Kent Holsing (989) 615-3901

(Elizabethtown, Ky.) – Union leaders representing thousands of workers employed at DowDuPont companies from the United States and around the globe recently met in Kentucky to discuss issues common across their worksites. 

Union members spent four days sharing collective bargaining data, identifying mutual obstacles, discussing the future and brainstorming potential solutions.

Delegates discussed a number of issues, primarily the DowDuPont merger, the subsequent split between the company’s new divisions and the potential effect on the employees, their families and communities. Other topics included workplace safety, organizing and the need for proactive communications between the corporations and the respective unions.

“The workers of DowDuPont are facing many changes and challenges in the coming months, and the unionized sites of DowDuPont around the globe will be working together to ensure the members’ best interests are represented,” said Kent Holsing, chairperson of the DowDuPont North American Labor Council and president of USW Local 12075 in Midland, Mich.

“We are speaking not only for the unionized employees of DowDuPont but also for the non-union employees who don’t have that voice. We are preparing action items to address these concerns.”

The meeting also served to strengthen international connections and increase mutual respect and understanding across DowDuPont’s unionized worksites.

Representatives from the United Steelworkers (USW); the International Union of Operating Engineers; Texas City Metal Trades; the International Chemical Workers Union Council/UFCW; National Conference of Firemen and Oilers; the Ampthill Rayon Workers Incorporated (ARWI);  the Dow Chemical-Stade Works Council (Germany); UNITE the Union (United Kingdom, Ireland); the Global Union Federation IndustriALL (Geneva, Switzerland); the Union of Workers and Employees Petrochemicals States-SOEPU (Argentina), the CUT and Forca Sindical (Brazil) participated in this year’s event.

The USW is the largest industrial union in North America, representing workers in a range of industries including metals, mining, rubber, paper and forestry, chemicals, oil refining, health care, security, hotels, and municipal governments and agencies

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Another Plant Closes as Administration Delays Action http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/another-plant-closes-as-administration-delays-action Mon, 25 Sep 2017 12:52:40 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/another-plant-closes-as-administration-delays-action CONTACT: Roxanne Brown (202) 778-4384, rbrown@usw.org

The United Steelworkers (USW) union released the following statement today that includes its letter to the Secretaries of Commerce and Defense. The correspondence highlights another steel plant closure and additional risks to U.S. security interest: the idling of the ArcelorMittal steel facility in Conshohocken, Pa., and the layoff of more than 200 steel workers. This further undermines the manufacturing of products critical to defense applications. The letter calls upon the Administration to complete its Section 232 investigation on the national security impact of steel imports. In April, the President called upon the Department of Commerce to act expeditiously, but five months have passed without any action taking place.  

“The idling of this steel facility and layoff of more than 200 highly skilled steel workers is another direct blow to our national security,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard.  “Our soldiers deployed in harm’s way depend on products made in this facility in building Mine-Resistant Ambush-Protected (MRAP) vehicles, Bradley land systems and all Navy Seapower systems. This steel closure is on the Administration’s watch.  At what point will they conclude their investigation and act?”

“Originally we were told that the steel investigation would be done by June,” said USW International Vice President Thomas M. Conway. “Now, press reports indicate the work is essentially done, but the White House wants to wait until Congress finishes tax reform.

“Steelworkers are angry that their jobs and national security interests are treated as secondary to tax cuts for the rich and powerful. Our national security should always come first. Many steel workers being laid off at this facility proudly wore the uniform and are dedicated to making vital equipment for our troops. The Administration’s refusal to act is just another sign that the Washington swamp has not been drained; it is business as usual. The White House needs to get its priorities straight.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

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USW Calls on Administration to Complete Steel Investigation; Protect National Security http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-calls-on-administration-to-complete-steel-investigation-protect-national-security Mon, 18 Sep 2017 11:43:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-calls-on-administration-to-complete-steel-investigation-protect-national-security CONTACT: Wayne Ranick: (412) 562-2444, wranick@usw.org

The United Steelworkers (USW) union issued the following release as dozens of steelworkers from around the country come to Washington D.C., to ask their legislators to press the Trump Administration to move forward on their Section 232 Investigation on the impact of steel imports on U.S. national security interests. In April, the administration initiated an investigation under Section 232 of the Trade Act of 1962. Despite reports that the investigation has been completed, the public release of the document has not occurred, and no relief has been provided.

Steelworkers from across the country are in Washington this week asking their elected representatives to press the Trump Administration to take action to protect national security. Since April, when the President called for the initiation of an investigation on the impact of imports of steel on our national security interests, imports have surged almost 21 percent. The delay in acting is further undermining our national security and critical infrastructure interests.

“The time to act is now, and workers are telling politicians their first-hand stories of the devastation in the industry and the critical importance of providing relief,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard.

“The delay in acting is devastating,” said USW International Vice President Tom Conway. “Plants are closing, jobs are lost and communities are injured while politicians delay. Now there are rumors that action is being delayed so Congress can focus on tax reform. That’s an insult to the hardworking men and women whose jobs depend on the industry. Steelworker jobs and our national security should not be held hostage to tax cuts for the rich and powerful as America’s future is at risk.”

Steelworkers from multiple U.S.-based steel-making operations in eight states, including plants in  Pennsylvania, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Alabama, Minnesota, Kentucky and  Michigan, are arranging visits with a bipartisan array of House and Senate offices this week to discuss the need to act quickly. In recent weeks, an increasing number of congressional members have contacted the administration requesting action. Just last week, Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman jointly made such a request.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

 

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USW: Rules of Origin Provision “Critical” in NAFTA Renegotiations http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-rules-of-origin-provision-critical-in-nafta-renegotiations Fri, 15 Sep 2017 13:00:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-rules-of-origin-provision-critical-in-nafta-renegotiations CONTACT: Wayne Ranick: (412) 562-2444, wranick@usw.org

The United Steelworkers union (USW) released the attached document today identifying its position on rules of origin in the ongoing North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiations.  

Rules of origin are a critical part of the renegotiations and identify the percentage of content that must be included in products to be eligible for trade benefits. 

News reports indicate that NAFTA negotiators will begin addressing this topic at the next round of negotiations which takes place Sept. 23-27.

The existing NAFTA rules of origin were negotiated more than a quarter century ago and do not reflect current economic reality and sourcing patterns.

The current rules allow for significant amounts of content from outside of North America to be included in a product but still be eligible for the trade agreements’ benefits. Other countries, like China, have been able to ship increasing amounts of products into North America to the detriment of production and employment in North America.

The attached proposal would strengthen the rules and ensure that a new agreement promote growth and opportunity for those covered by the agreement.

To read the USW’s proposal, click here.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

 

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USW Statement on DACA Termination http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-statement-on-daca-termination Wed, 06 Sep 2017 06:01:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-statement-on-daca-termination CONTACT: Wayne Ranick: (412) 562-2444, wranick@usw.org

(Pittsburgh) --The following statement was issued today by United Steelworkers (USW) International President Leo W. Gerard following Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ announcement that the administration would terminate in six months the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that suspended deportation of young people brought to the United States by parents who did not have documentation.

“Deporting young people brought to the United States by parents lacking proper documentation to immigrate is punishing the child for the dreams of the parents. The vast majority contribute positively to our economy, our national defense and respond to natural disasters such as Harvey.

“A huge proportion of the 800,000 young people who qualified for DACA status were transported to the United States by parents who were desperate for work after losing family farms because of NAFTA or who were terrorized by drug gangs and other violence in their home countries. DACA protected these young people from being deported for decisions made by their parents, decisions that were utterly out of the children’s control.

“To spare from deportation these 800,000 young people who trusted the government enough to provide their names, addresses and other identifying information, Congress now must quickly act to enshrine in law the protections DACA provided.

“Like the AFL-CIO, the USW supports comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship for these youngsters and their hard-working parents, some of whom are USW members. If a comprehensive agreement is impossible, Congress must quickly find a way to adopt a narrower measure to protect the DACA recipients.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

 

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USW: High Level of Union Approval Not Surprising http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-high-level-of-union-approval-not-surprising Thu, 31 Aug 2017 09:58:11 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-high-level-of-union-approval-not-surprising CONTACT: Wayne Ranick (412) 562-2444, wranick@usw.org

(Pittsburgh) --The following statement was issued today by United Steelworkers (USW) International President Leo W. Gerard following a Gallup poll showing that labor unions have an approval rating of 61 percent, the highest since 2003.

The resurgence of labor union popularity is good news. With a Gallup Poll showing the approval rate for organized labor at 61 percent, unions are much more popular than Congress. This may be because unions get things done.

They increase wages for all workers – union and non-union alike. They work to create safer workplaces. They've campaigned against efforts to suppress voting. And union members in Texas, including members of the United Steelworkers, are actively rescuing flood victims and raising money for restoration of impacted communities.

“It is gratifying to see that the popularity of unions has risen 13 points since 2009, particularly when wealthy, right-wing groups like ALEC and the State Policy Network are working every day to crush unions. The USW, the AFL-CIO and all of its member unions will continue working to end income inequality and improve the lives of all workers by ensuring they receive a fair share of the bounty created by their labor."

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

 

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USW Members Overwhelmingly Approve Goodyear Contract http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-members-overwhelmingly-approve-goodyear-contract Thu, 24 Aug 2017 12:00:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-members-overwhelmingly-approve-goodyear-contract More information, contact: Kevin Johnsen – (205) 631-0137; kjohnsen@usw.org
                                              Tony Montana – (412) 562-2592; tmontana@usw.org

 

The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that the members of Locals 2L, 12L, 307L, 831L and 959L have ratified a new collective bargaining agreement with Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company on behalf of about 7,200 workers at tire plants in Akron, Ohio; Danville, Va.; Fayetteville, N.C.; Gadsden, Ala.; and Topeka, Kan., by a three-to-one margin.

USW International Vice President Tom Conway, who chairs the union’s Goodyear negotiations, credited workers’ solidarity throughout the bargaining process for a contract that achieved the goals the membership identified as important.

“We were able to negotiate the best contract in recent memory because our membership was united, and from the outset, our priorities were clear,” Conway said. “We are always strongest when we speak with one voice, and we proved once again that we can accomplish great things when we stand together.”

The five-year contract includes significant wage improvements, retains Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA), closes gaps between labor grade tiers and extends plant protection guarantees that none of the plants will close during the term of the agreement.

The contract also includes a commitment from Goodyear to invest in the future of the facilities to enhance the long term job security of the union workforce; maintains quality, affordable healthcare; and resolves a variety of local issues.

USW-Goodyear Contract Coordinator Kevin Johnsen, a Staff Representative in District 9, praised the local union leadership for keeping everyone on the same page, even when bargaining progress was slow.

“Our leadership earned the faith and trust of our members by communicating truthfully and regularly during negotiations,” Johnsen said. “The local union officers, bargaining committee members and volunteer activists deserve tremendous credit for stepping up and delivering support when we needed it.”

The newly ratified agreement will expire at 6 p.m. on July 29, 2022.

The USW represents 850,000 men and women employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in public sector and service occupations.

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USW Statement on Violence in Charlottesville http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-statement-on-violence-in-charlottesville Mon, 14 Aug 2017 17:44:01 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-statement-on-violence-in-charlottesville (Pittsburgh) --The following statement was issued today by Fred Redmond, United Steelworkers (USW) Vice President for Human Affairs, on the domestic terrorism perpetrated by white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va., last weekend.

The United Steelworkers (USW) mourns the loss of two Virginia State Troopers and a civilian anti-hate activist in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend, and it sends prayers for speedy recovery of the 19 injured.

A fundamental tenet of the labor movement is that an injustice to one is an injustice to all. Based on that principle, the USW condemns racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, and anti-LGBTQ and anti-Muslim bigotry, but even more importantly, the USW denounces hate-motivated violence.

Members of the USW cherish the assertion in the second paragraph of the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”

The USW believes that all Americans are obligated in these troubled times to deeply consider those words from the nation’s founders, to practice them in our lives and to truly listen to each other as we discuss our duties and responsibilities to each other as humans and Americans. 

The USW represents workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors. For more information: http://www.usw.org/.

 

 

 

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USW Promises to Continue Solidarity on 10th Anniversary of Mineros Strike http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-promises-to-continue-solidarity-on-10th-anniversary-of-mineros-strike Fri, 28 Jul 2017 15:10:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-promises-to-continue-solidarity-on-10th-anniversary-of-mineros-strike (PITTSBURGH) – The United Steelworkers (USW) released the following statement from USW International President Leo W. Gerard on the 10th anniversary of strikes launched by the Mexican miners and metalworkers union Los Mineros at three Grupo Mexico locations.

“On July 30, members of Los Mineros, the mining, steel and manufacturing workers’ union of Mexico led by Napoleón Gómez Urrutia, will mark the 10th anniversary of their strike against Grupo Mexico at three locations: Cananea, Sombrerete, and Taxco.

“The strike began in 2007 when the company, supported by the Mexican government, attempted to remove Gómez from the union leadership and gut the union’s collective bargaining agreements. At other Grupo Mexico locations, the company was able to break the Mineros and install company-controlled ‘protection’ unions, but workers at Cananea, Sombrerete, and Taxco have continued to resist thanks to the support of their fellow union members and their families over the past decade.

“Grupo Mexico has continued its effort to suppress democratic unions. At Cananea, the company installed a puppet union, the CTM, in 2010 after an armed assault on the Mineros by 4,000 military and police backed by helicopters. Since that date, workers have continued to die as a result of health and safety violations, and nearly three years ago on August 6, 2014, the company released millions of gallons of toxic mine waste into the Sonora River, poisoning local communities.

“The Mineros and local residents have continued to fight back, demanding that the company pay for the damage to the environment as well as profit-sharing payments that are owed to Mineros members. Likewise, workers in Taxco and Sombrerete have fiercely resisted the company's attempts to buy them off or force them out.

“At mines, mills, and factories across Mexico, the government has assisted employers to fight Mineros organizing campaigns and bargaining demands, denying workers the right to free elections to choose their union and using violence to break strikes. The government has refused to allow the leader of the Mineros, Napoleón Gómez, to enter the country, continuing to file spurious criminal charges against him even after he was cleared by the highest court in 2014.

“Despite these attacks, the Mineros have continued to organize new members, launch strikes, and win the highest wage increases of any workers in Mexico.

“Grupo Mexico has also disregarded the rights of USW members at Asarco in Arizona and Texas, who have been working without a wage increase since 2009. The company has refused to pay copper bonuses to employees hired after June 30, 2011. Region 28 of the National Labor Relations Board has issued several unfair labor practice charges against the company. The USW continues to fight for a fair and equitable contract for its members.

“Led by USW District 12, the Steelworkers and Workers Uniting have stood with our Mineros sisters and brothers for the past decade, working together to build cross-border solidarity in defense of workers’ rights and in support of local communities. We will continue this solidarity – one day longer – until justice is won.

“On Aug. 16, Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. will begin discussions on the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Unions from all three countries have demanded that any new agreement include an effective and enforceable mechanism to prevent violations of workers' fundamental rights to organize, bargain, and strike.

“One thing is clear – we can never support or accept a trade agreement that permits attacks on the rights of workers and the welfare of communities such as those committed by the Mexican government and Grupo Mexico over the past decade.” 

The USW is the largest industrial union in North America, representing workers in a range of industries including metals, mining, rubber, paper and forestry, oil refining, health care, security, hotels, and municipal governments and agencies.

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USW to Trump: the time to act is now http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/the-time-to-act-is-now Wed, 26 Jul 2017 13:02:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/the-time-to-act-is-now CONTACT: Holly Hart, (202) 778-4384 

(Pittsburgh) -- United Steelworkers (USW) International President Leo W. Gerard released the following statement in response to news reports that President Trump has decided to delay action in support of the domestic steel industry under Section 232 of U.S. trade law. Section 232 provides the President with significant authority to impose penalties if he determines that imports of a specific product such as steel undermine U.S. national security.

“Delay is devastating. Since the President announced an investigation in April, attacks on the U.S. steel sector have skyrocketed, with imports up 18%. Trading partners have targeted the U.S. market for fear that the United States will finally stand up for its producers and workers and protect our national security. Postponing relief is equivalent to unilateral disarmament.

“Trading relationships in the steel sector are complex. But enough time, attention and investigation have passed to know what needs to be done. Steel, the foundation of our national security, is crumbling under the onslaught of foreign imports. Much of that is illegally traded.  

“Workers’ hopes were raised during the campaign and by the President’s announcement. They are sick and tired of Washington politicians saying they care, and dragging their feet.

“The time to act is now.”

The USW is the largest industrial union in North America, representing workers in a range of industries including metals, mining, rubber, paper and forestry, oil refining, health care, security, hotels, and municipal governments and agencies.

 

 

 

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USW: Administration’s NAFTA Renegotiation Objectives Must Reverse Past Failures http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-administrations-nafta-renegotiation-objectives-must-reverse-past-failures Tue, 18 Jul 2017 10:37:00 -0500 http://www.usw.org/news/media-center/releases/2017/usw-administrations-nafta-renegotiation-objectives-must-reverse-past-failures CONTACT: Holly Hart (202) 778-4384, hhart@usw.org

(Pittsburgh) -- United Steelworkers (USW) International President Leo W. Gerard released the following statement after the office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) released a letter to Congress identifying the objectives it would seek to fulfill in its upcoming renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

“The USW has long supported the renegotiation of NAFTA, but unfortunately, the objectives identified in the USTR’s letter do not go nearly far enough to ensure that the negative impact of NAFTA on workers in the United States, Canada and Mexico will be reversed.

“The USTR seems to be backing the same priorities that have guided trade agreements since NAFTA was first negotiated, promoting corporate interests and leaving workers behind. This is not what workers who supported President Trump in the election expected: They assumed that he would renegotiate NAFTA to create better paying jobs for them and their families, rather than chasing higher profits and greater protections for corporate interests.

“The President campaigned on promoting a new approach on trade, and the USW made clear, right after the election, that we would work with him where we could. Today’s letter makes us wonder how different his policies will really be. At the end of the day, the measure of success will be the number of manufacturing jobs – and the quality of those jobs – that are maintained and created.

“Renegotiating NAFTA is a complex undertaking. Workers’ rights need to be expanded, implemented and enforced. Currency manipulation must be addressed. Rules of origin must be dramatically changed to promote production and jobs. Coordination on trade rules should be strengthened to ensure that China and other countries engaged in unfair and illegal activities can’t use our NAFTA partner markets to undermine our interests. Investor state dispute settlement provisions must be eliminated.

“Washington remains out of touch with working people. In the coming days, our members will fight for trade policies that advance our interests and those of our fellow workers in North America. We will hold the Administration accountable to its promise to truly fix NAFTA, and if the renegotiations fail to advance the concerns of working people, we will fight like hell to defeat them.”

The USW is the largest industrial union in North America, representing workers in a range of industries including metals, mining, rubber, paper and forestry, oil refining, health care, security, hotels, and municipal governments and agencies.

 

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