The U.S. and the other TPP nations – including several with notoriously bad labor and human rights records, such as Vietnam and Brunei – formally released the text on November 5, triggering a mandated congressional review that will stretch into next year.
The review gives workers time – but not much – to mobilize against the TPP. Then, lawmakers will be forced to vote not on the TPP itself, but on legislation to implement it. And fast-track trade authority bars lawmakers from either changing the TPP’s terms or revising implementing legislation President Obama will send to Capitol Hill.
“The threats of this expansive new agreement outweigh its benefits -- for good jobs, for democracy, for affordable medicines, for consumer safety, and for the environment,” said AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. “The hardworking families of the AFL-CIO will join with our allies to defeat the TPP.”
On today's Labor Calendar, the AFL-CIO will host its Toys for Tots Kickoff and Veteran's Day Observance this morning at 10am at its 16th Street headquarters.
And tonight at 6pm, sing-along with the DC Labor Chorus at the Takoma park Busboys & Poets at this month’s Bread and Roses. Go to dclabor.org and click on calendar for complete details.
Here’s today’s labor history:
On this date in 1933, a sit-down strike began at the Austin, Minnesota Hormel plant with the help of a Wobbly organizer, leading to the creation of the Independent Union of All Workers. Labor historians believe this may have been the first sit-down strike of the 1930s. Workers held the plant for three days, demanding a wage increase. Some 400 men crashed through the plant entrance and chased out nonunion workers. One group rushed through the doors of a conference room where Jay Hormel and five company executives were meeting and declared: “We’re taking possession. So move out.” Within four days the company agreed to binding arbitration.
Today’s labor quote is by writer Upton Sinclair:
“For 75 years big business had been sitting down on the American people.”
Sinclair was a novelist, playwright, muckraker, socialist and winner of the 1943 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.