Statement by CWA President Chris Shelton in response to the State of the Union Address | Communications Workers of America

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Statement by CWA President Chris Shelton in response to the State of the Union Address

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

President Trump tried hard to spin his record on “defending American workers,” but the truth is that working people are much worse off one year into the Trump presidency.

The tax cut that the President and Republicans jammed through Congress gives billions of dollars to corporations and the 1 percent at the expense of the rest of us. Some companies have doled out bonuses, and those extra dollars always make a difference to working families. But instead of putting more money into creating good jobs and increasing wages, these corporations have made it clear that their tax break will be used mainly to enrich executives and shareholders.

Here’s the reality for working people after one year of the Trump administration:

  • Corporations are encouraged by the corporate tax bill to send even more jobs overseas. We’ve seen call center closings by some of the biggest U.S. corporations, with work shifted to the Philippines, Dominican Republic and other countries. Other big corporations like General Electric, Microsoft, Lowe’s, Nabisco and others have recently announced new closings and more jobs going overseas.
  • Plans for a renegotiated NAFTA still include the worst elements of past U.S. trade deals, including special rights for investors and the failure to include enforceable labor and environmental standards.
     
  • Federal regulations covering job safety and health, wage theft and workers’ rights have been reversed, putting workers at greater risk for job injury and illnesses and giving employers more opportunity to cheat workers of their rightful wages.
  • Instead of “draining the swamp,” President Trump has filled his administration with Wall Streeters who have moved to weaken protections for working people’s retirement savings and block regulations that safeguard consumers from bank and credit industry abuses.


 

U.S. Representative Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.) hosted CWA Local 1170 member Dustin Newman at the State of the Union address, to spotlight the Trump administration’s failure to save good jobs.

Newman, an Army reservist from Rochester, N.Y., was laid off in January along with 31 other Frontier Communications employees in as part of a larger company-wide downsizing.

In contrast to the President’s empty promises, CWA and working people have a clear agenda. We want to keep good jobs here in the U.S., and raise wages for working families. We expect a real plan to improve our roads, bridges, highways and public buildings that is not based on big tax handouts to private companies and budget cuts. We want fair treatment for the “dreamers” who came to this country as children and who have become full contributing members of our communities and our nation.

That’s the agenda that millions of working families support.