UNI welcomes Obama’s plan for creating jobs in US

UNI welcomes Obama’s plan for creating jobs in US

UNI Global Union said it welcomes the clear statement from US President Barak Obama in support of creating quality jobs for Americans with his proposed legislation, the American Jobs Act.

“We’re delighted that the President recognises that work is central to people’s lives and needs to be at the centre of the economic recovery plan,” said UNI General Secretary Philip Jennings. “It is clear that he cares about working Americans and wants to help the unemployed get back to work, while strengthening the US education system and improving the roads, bridges and buildings across the country.”

In his speech on Thursday, Obama was also unequivocal in his support of collective bargaining rights.

"I reject the idea that we have to strip away collective bargaining rights to compete in a global economy,” Obama said. “We shouldn’t be in a race to the bottom, where we try to offer the cheapest labour and the worst pollution standards.  America should be in a race to the top.  And I believe that’s a race we can win."

UNI believes Obama’s plan is a positive way to put more Americans back to work. UNI and its affiliated unions around the world have been pushing their national governments and the G20 to focus on quality job creation that includes the right to unionise and bargain collectively for fair pay and benefits.

“The key to rebuilding as strong global economy is the creation of good jobs, where workers have bargaining rights and can ensure a good future for themselves and their families,” Jennings said.
“This is an important message to American workers and American companies that President Obama supports collective bargaining rights at a time when they are under intense attack. We hope this turns into real support for all our union sisters and brothers in the US that are fighting for their rights at Verizon, at the US Postal Service, at Walmart and in every job in every state in the nation. We also believe in the race to the top, not just in the US but in the global economy as well.”

What US unions are saying:

Larry Cohen, President of US UNI affiliate the Communications Workers of America, responded to the speech on the Ed Show on MSNBC. He called on worker across the country to join the fight for their bargaining rights at the ballot box and in their communities.
You can watch him here: http://www.cwa-union.org/video/entry/cwa_president_larry_cohen_discusses_jobs_on_the_ed_show

UFCW President Joe Hansen said: “President Obama’s plan for job creation, including a private fund to rebuild our roads and schools, a tax cut for companies that hire workers and help for the long-term unemployed, is a good start.”
You can read his full remarks here: http://ufcw.blogspot.com/2011/09/ufcw-president-joe-hansen-on-president.html

SEIU President Mary Kay Henry said: “Tonight, President Obama displayed the leadership America needs by laying out a strong agenda to get America back to work. The proposals he outlined are an excellent starting point in the crucial effort to create good jobs now.”
You can read her full remarks here: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/09/09/service-employees-international-union-seiu-backs-american-jobs-act

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said: “The President took an important and necessary step tonight: he started a serious national conversation about how to solve our jobs crisis.”
You can read his full remarks here: http://blog.aflcio.org/2011/09/08/trumka-in-speech-obama-goes-to-the-mat-to-create-new-jobs/

Rachel Cohen
Director of Communications
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