WASHINGTON -- The Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union is seeking sponsors for a bill that would track plant closings and job losses because of corporate moves to Mexico.
In letters to nine senators from eight states who voted for the North American Free Trade Agreement last November, the ACTWU is looking for support of a four-point plan, said Joseph Costigan, communications director of the Chicago and Central States Board of ACTWU.
The proposed legislation would require the Labor Department track plant closings or production moves; the government track foreign investments by U.S. companies and end tax breaks for firms that invest overseas; the Commerce Department categorize exports assembled in Mexico and then imported back to the U.S., and demand that international worker rights files are opened.
The union has not had any takers on its proposal yet, Costigan said, noting the letters were prompted, by flyers posted in Chicago apparel shops advertising a workshop for U.S. apparel makers on sourcing and investment in Mexico.
"If there is nothing to fear from NAFTA, as everyone said during the debate, there should be no problem with sponsoring this legislation," Costigan said. Senators written by ACTWU were Tom Harkin, (D., Iowa); Robert Kerrey (D., Neb.); Carol Moseley-Braun (D., Ill.); Paul Simon (D., Ill.); Hank Brown, (R., Colo.); Dan Coats (R., Ind.); Charles Grassley (R., Iowa); Richard Lugar (R., Ind.); and Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.).
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