IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr. sent a letter to U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh urging the department to extend the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program and allow it to start receiving applications.
“Thousands of hard-working people are counting on this benefit, which provides crucial assistance such as training and employment services,” said IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr. in the letter. “TAA has been an extremely useful benefit helping workers rebound from losing a job to trade.”
The letter came as a result of reports that tens of thousands of workers affected by unfair trade practices are currently awaiting the determination of their petition for TAA support.
The $494 million for the U.S. Department of Labor program was included as part of the omnibus funding bill passed by Congress.
“The IAM and the entire labor movement hope these dollars will be put to work by the DOL as soon as possible to accept new TAA applications,” said Martinez.