Aviation, Maritime Exclusions Must Remain
Washington, DC — In comments filed yesterday, transportation labor laid out a vision for renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that puts America’s working families first by growing the U.S. economy, protecting American jobs and prioritizing the safety of our cross-border transportation system.
In addition to the comprehensive recommendations of the AFL-CIO, the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), called for new policies that enforce strict protections for transportation workers and ensure the industries they work in remain hubs for good, middle-class jobs.
“Our trade agreements, including NAFTA, should not be used to undermine the jobs and rights of transportation employees and the broader U.S. workforce. Not only have promises of greater wealth and more opportunity not come to fruition under NAFTA, but the very rules and regulations designed to keep working people safe have been jeopardized under this agreement,” said Edward Wytkind, President of TTD. “President Trump campaigned on a promise to reform our trade policies. The renegotiation of NAFTA presents a clear opportunity to craft a new agreement that expands and strengthens the American middle class and ensures our transportation system remains the safest in the world.”
Specifically, TTD is calling for any renegotiated version of NAFTA to:
- Prohibit bus and truck traffic from Mexico that violates U.S. safety rules including attempts to evade hours of service limits, drug and alcohol testing, and the appropriate credentialing for Mexico-based drivers;
- Uphold U.S.-backed standards for safety inspections of freight rail locomotives and to prohibit Mexico-based freight train crews from operating trains beyond the border;
- Preserve Buy America standards and other procurement rules that maximize job creation when U.S. taxpayer dollars are invested in our economy;
- Require each country to make minimum investments in infrastructure to facilitate economic expansion;
- Ensure that foreign companies cannot use NAFTA to force the privatization of local transit, rail and other public services; and
- Protect U.S. aviation and maritime sectors from unfair competition by continuing to exclude these industries from the scope of the agreement.
“Our trade agreements should be designed to put money in the pockets of America’s working families, not large, multi-national corporations or foreign governments,” Wytkind said. “We call on this Administration to renegotiate NAFTA in a way that will create good jobs for Americans who need them most, grow the economy and uphold strict standards that keep our transportation system and working people safe.”