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Policy

Oppose Anti-Labor Resolutions that Eliminate Ship American “Cargo Preference” Rules

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), representing 37 labor unions across all modes of transportation and USA Maritime, a coalition of American ship operators, maritime labor organizations, and maritime trade associations, we urge you to oppose H. Con. Res. 92. This resolution, led by Representatives Jackie Walorski, Jim Costa, Michelle Fischbach and Danny Davis, would eliminate Ship American “cargo preference” rules that are essential to our U.S. Merchant Marine and U.S.-flag shipping industry. This unnecessary resolution would waive a requirement that 50% of U.S. food-aid exports must be shipped on U.S.-flagged ships, thereby waiving Ship American rules worldwide to the detriment of the U.S. maritime workforce. To be clear, this means that the federal government would cede U.S. food-aid and shipping interests to foreign flag ships by eliminating 100% of the U.S. ships that are available to transport food-aid at fair and reasonable rates.

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Unions Stand Against Sexual Assault and Harassment

By Admin

The Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), the Maritime Trades Department, AFL-CIO (MTD), the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots (MM&P), the Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (MEBA), Sailors’ Union of the Pacific (SUP), Seafarers International Union of North America (SIU) and the American Maritime Officers (AMO) are pleased to respond to the Maritime Administration (MARAD) request for public comment on the Every Mariner Builds a Respectful Culture (EMBARC) policy. These unions represent the unlicensed and licensed mariners who work aboard sea year vessels. Collectively, we support the goals and intentions set forth by EMBARC and are committed to addressing systemic and cultural changes in the maritime industry to prevent incidents of sexual assault and sexual harassment (SASH) in a workplace that doubles as every mariner’s home.

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Physical Brake Inspections Keep Everyone Safe

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I am pleased to respond to the Federal Railroad Administration’s notice regarding Canadian Pacific and Union Pacific’s petition for waiver of compliance and statutory exemption. TTD consists of 37 affiliate unions representing the totality of rail labor, including carmen and other rail workers who work on lines covered by this waiver.[1]

The requested waiver would provide relief from 49 CFR 232.213 and 49 USC 20303 would allow technology-based advanced testing (the Automated Brake Effectiveness (ABE) Test Process) performed by wheel temperature detectors as an alternative approach to manual Class I brake tests performed by Certified Car Inspectors (Qualified Mechanical Inspectors).

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TTD Applauds STB’s Proposal on Freight Service, But More Action Is Required

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I am pleased to respond to the Surface Transportation Board’s proposed rule regarding Expedited Relief for Service Emergencies. TTD consists of 37 affiliate unions representing the totality of rail labor in the U.S.[1]

The proposed rule would amend procedures for parties seeking a board order directing an incumbent carrier to take action to remedy a service emergency. The rule would allow the board to initiate an emergency order without external appeal. The rule also would shorten the filing deadlines for parties subject to the emergency order and other participants. Finally, the rule would establish procedures for a new, accelerated emergency order petition option that would be used if petitioners could demonstrate that the existing process would be too slow to adequately ensure priorities such as food security, public health, or high probability of business closures.

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TTD Responds to DOT Buy America Waiver

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I am pleased to respond to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Proposed Temporary Waiver of Buy America Requirements for Construction Materials. TTD consists of 37 affiliate unions representing workers in construction and manufacturing who are directly impacted by Buy America policies.[1]

The waiver would provide relief from Buy America requirements for 180 days, beginning May 14, 2022. During this time, DOT expects states, industry, and other partners to begin the compliance process in conjunction with the new Made in America standards that were included in the Build America, Buy America (BABA) title of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). These requirements include that all of the iron, steel, manufactured products, and construction materials used in federally-assisted infrastructure projects are produced in the United States.

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TTD Calls for Passage of the Federal Firefighters Fairness Act of 2022

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I urge you to vote YES on H.R. 2499, the “Federal Firefighters Fairness Act of 2022,” when it is considered this week.

Federal firefighters risk their lives every day protecting the American people, property, and the environment. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), fire suppression activities involve recurring exposure to high heat, smoke, stress, and hazardous substances, all of which can lead to a host of chronic illnesses. Despite the well-documented occupational risks of firefighting, federal firefighters who fall ill must provide specific details about the exposure that caused their occupational illness when filing a claim for federal workers’ compensation. For a federal firefighter with a cancer diagnosis, a leading cause of death among firefighters, this requirement can prove to be particularly onerous, given the difficulty in identifying the time, location, and duration of exposure to carcinogenic substances. While nearly every state offers presumption of occupational illness to local and state firefighters, no such federal law currently exists for federal firefighters.

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TTD Calls for Passage of the Rights for the TSA Workforce Act of 2022

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I urge you to vote YES on H.R. 903, the “Rights for the TSA Workforce Act of 2022” when it is considered next week.

Every day, thousands of Transportation Security Officers (TSOs) show up to work to keep our aviation system, mass transit networks, and large public gatherings safe and secure for transportation workers and the general public. However, since the creation of the TSA, its dedicated and skilled employees have been denied many of the basic federal worker rights and protections enjoyed by other federal workers, including those in the Department of Homeland Security. There is no justification for the ongoing mistreatment of the men and women of the TSO workforce, and H.R. 903 takes critical steps to ensure that they have the workplace rights they have earned and deserve.

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Oppose Anti-U.S.-flag Shipping Resolutions

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), representing 37 affiliate unions across all modes of transportation, I urge you to oppose S. Con. Res. 37 and 38, led by Senators Coons and Ernst, that would eliminate Ship American “cargo preference” rules essential to our U.S. Merchant Marine and U.S.-flag shipping industry. These unnecessary resolutions would waive a requirement that 50% of U.S. food-aid exports must be shipped on U.S.-flagged ships, which waives Ship American rules worldwide.

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TTD Responds to DOT on Oral Fluid Drug Testing

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I am pleased to respond to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) proposed rule regarding the Addition of Oral Fluid Specimen Testing for Drugs. TTD consists of 37 affiliate unions representing workers across all modes of transportation.[1]

The proposed rule would allow the use of oral fluid specimens to be used for drug testing programs. In 2019, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) approved the use of oral fluid drug testing, and this proposed rule would align DOT’s regulations with the new Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs using Oral Fluid already finalized by HHS. In addition to the establishment of oral fluids as an accepted specimen, DOT also proposes to make a number of changes to its drug testing regulations beyond the scope of the addition of a new specimen.

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TTD President Greg Regan Testifies in STB Hearing on Urgent Rail Service Issues

By Admin

On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD) and our 37 affiliated unions, including the totality of rail labor, I first want to thank Chairman Oberman and the other Members of the Surface Transportation Board for the opportunity to speak before the Board today on the issues facing our freight rail network. The employees represented by TTD-affiliated unions are on the front lines of these challenges and have been sounding the alarm on the state of the freight rail industry for years. It is deeply unfortunate, but also completely predictable, that we would find ourselves here today. As both railroad employees and customers sit before you today to express a shared simple fact – that today’s freight rail network is simply not working for anyone other than railroad investors – we hope that the Board embraces this opportunity to effectuate positive change for rail employees, shippers, and the American public.

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