WASHINGTON, DC – Edward Wytkind, President of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO, issued the following statement in anticipation of Labor Day 2011:
“Labor Day reminds us of the contributions of working people to our economy and to the lives of all Americans. It also serves as a reminder – during this time of unacceptably high unemployment – that our elected leaders must put our nation back to work as millions of Americans suffer.
“Transportation workers wonder why Washington is so broken. They wonder why so many elected officials fail to understand that more endless gridlock on major transportation investment and safety bills threatens the economy and the future competitiveness of our nation.
“Our members understand that without bold action the economy will continue to sputter and joblessness will only worsen. The obsession in Washington over the federal deficit and budget cutting – while our economy burns – isn’t putting anyone to work. But that obsession is making it impossible to advance bipartisan proposals that will fix our crumbling transportation system and infrastructure and create good jobs that continue to evade our weakened economy.
“It is time to complete the long overdue aviation safety and jobs bill and stop the demagoguery over issues that do not belong in this legislation. It is time to pass a surface transportation bill that mirrors the President’s half a trillion dollar blueprint, a plan that will put millions to work. And it is time to invest in our entire transportation infrastructure – from airports and air traffic control to mass transit, highways, rail, ports and maritime. These federal investments will reverse course on decades of neglect that today threatens the economy, millions of jobs and the safety of our transportation system.
“On this Labor Day, we reaffirm our commitment to fight for the men and women who deliver the transportation needs of our nation. We will give it everything we have to demand action from our elected officials on key policy initiatives that will modernize and expand our transportation system and jump start an economy starving for the types of jobs these strategic investments will create.”
The Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO, represents 32 member unions in the aviation, rail, transit, motor carrier, highway, longshore, maritime and related industries. For more information, visit www.ttd.org.