Union members representing nearly a dozen different internationals spent an hour with Virginia Congressman Don Beyer on Monday at NoVA Labor explaining their opposition to proposed Fast Track legislation. Beyer asked for the meeting shortly after a delegation from the Northern Virginia Labor Federation dropped by his Washington office on March 4 during the AFL-CIO’s blitz against Fast Track on Capitol Hill...click below to read more.
- report/photo by Dan Duncan; photo: Emil Abate (Unite Here 23, left) and Lou Cernak (IUOE 99, center) discuss their opposition to Fast Track legislation with Virginia Congressman Don Beyer.
The first-term legislator noted that it’s been difficult to get information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade measure being negotiated in secrecy by the United States and Asian countries. He also said that apparently China, which is not part of the TPP negotiations, is trying to negotiate a similar pact that would allow for lower standards. The unionists asked Beyer questions and presented him with data on American job losses following other trade pacts over the last 20 years, expressed their concern that even more US jobs would be lost and America’s standard of living for working people would be harmed if Fast Track authority is allowed for future trade pacts.
In recent months, tens of thousands have spoken out in opposition to Fast Track: over 86,000 calls were made to Members of Congress while over 40,000 people have already signed onto a national petition to stop Fast Track. Around the country over 400 events have been organized in Congressional districts.
Unions represented at the NoVA meeting included the AFT, CWA, IAFF, IBEW, IUOE, NFFE-IAM, OPEIU, SIU, UAW and Unite Here!