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United Steelworkers Union International President calls for reviving manufacturing

08.14.11

AUGUST 2011, Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton edition of The Union News

United Steelworkers Union International President calls for reviving manufacturing

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

LEHIGH VALLEY, July 11th- Leo Gerald, President of the United Steelworkers (USW) International Union stated that United States manufacturing and nation’s defense industries are in critical condition and must be revived to ensure national security.

“The American economy remains fragile and uncertainty reigns. Unemployment, underemployment, wage stagnation, foreclosures all paint a grim picture of an economy still struggling to recover. For American manufacturing communities, this recession has been just one more big wave of economic tsunams that have devastated workers, employers and communties,” said Mr. Gerald.

Speaking for the United Steelworkers Union and its affiliates, before a United States Commitee on Commerce, Science and Transportation hearing, Mr. Gerard called for immediate action with strategic and employment linked policies, investments and incentives to revitalize a manufacturing base that lost some six million jobs and 57,000 manufacturing facilities between 1998 and 2010.

Local 2599, East Lehigh Street in Bethlehem, represents USW members throughout the Lehigh Valley. Jerry Green is President of Local 2599.

Calling erosion of America’s manufacturing base a “clear and present danger,” Mr. Gerard told the committee that the health of manufacturing and the nation’s defense industries are inextricably linked.

“We believe that the decade long decline of the American manufacturing base is a crisis that has undermined our economic security and is a direct threat to our national security. The question before us is, what has happened to that prosperity and security and what must we do to strengthen the nation’s industrial base,” he added

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