(HARRISBURG, PA) The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically changed the job-scape and prospects for workers. The unemployment rate in Pennsylvania remains double what it was in March. Millions of workers across the country are still in jeopardy of losing their job or contracting the coronavirus through workplace exposure.
The economy hasn’t worked for working people in decades, and now we are all witnessing the toll of neglect. Far-right corporate interests have dominated the American government and influenced public policies that rip away the rights of working women and men. This is why we need a worker-centered plan to create jobs that pay fair wages and build the infrastructure we need for a robust 21st-century economy.
The officers of the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO, President Rick Bloomingdale, and Secretary-Treasurer Frank Snyder hosted a virtual town hall on jobs, infrastructure, and workplace safety. They were joined by U.S Senators Bob Casey and Sherrod Brown.
PA AFL-CIO President Rick Bloomingdale stated, “Working people across the industrial heartland are facing extraordinary challenges. We have a decision to make about the future we want to live in and leave to future generations. Donald Trump’s first term stripped the bargaining power from public employees nationwide; a second term would rob millions of more workers of their right to join a union and collectively bargain. We want an economy where workers’ rights are the highest priority, and good union jobs lead to healthy, prospering communities. Joe Biden will be the jobs president; his administration will expand your rights on the job. Workers need Joe Biden.”
“Four years ago Donald Trump sold Pennsylvania workers a phony populism, and he betrayed them — he broke his promises to invest in infrastructure and manufacturing, he failed to protect workers on the job, and he’s carried out the same old Wall Street agenda that hasn’t worked for the industrial Midwest. Joe Biden has become the Dignity of Work candidate — he’s campaigning through the eyes of workers, and he’ll govern through the eyes of workers, with a real plan to make Pennsylvanians’ lives better through investment in the people who make this country work”, remarked U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown.
U.S. Senator Bob Casey stated, “Donald Trump is a corporate President, plain and simple. We know that from his obscene tax bill that gave an almost $2 trillion give-away to large multinational corporations that exploded our debt; his four years of policies that undermine workers’ rights, workers’ safety, and workers’ voices; and his far-right judicial nominees who regularly protect the wealthy and privileged at the expense of consumers and hard-working Americans. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it was clear that the economy wasn’t working for everyone and that President Trump did not have a plan to help Americans who were left behind. In this time of crisis, we must meet the moment and build back better. Joe Biden understands that we need a new American economy for our families and for the next generation. With Joe Biden as our next President, we will have an economy that revitalizes manufacturing, strengthens the middle class, and actually works for working people.”
PA AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Frank Snyder added, “Donald Trump’s record on jobs is abysmal. In the middle of the greatest economic and public health crisis in a century, he has routinely ignored every opportunity to create and save jobs and support working people. He holds rallies in airport hangers while he and his party refuse to act to save tens of thousands of jobs in the airline industry. Our jobs are nothing more than a political backdrop. Joe Biden will invest in infrastructure and make American manufacturing a priority, not just a talking point.”