Michigan Steelworkers to Receive Support from Trade Assistance Program

Thursday, February 27, 2020

The U.S. Department of Labor will provide more than 1,700 steelworkers in southeast Michigan with Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) benefits that help workers find new jobs. This certification follows the efforts of U.S. Senators Stabenow and Peters, along with Representatives Dingell, Lawrence, and Tlaib, who urged the Department of Labor to support workers at U.S. Steel’s Great Lakes Works operation who have lost their jobs or are at risk of losing their jobs due to trade.


The Trade Adjustment Assistance program provides workers impacted by trade with the tools they need to get back on their feet after they lose their jobs. The program offers workers and their families income support, job training, tax credits for health care, and other benefits as they transition to new employment.


“I am very pleased steelworkers who are losing their jobs are getting well-deserved help. The Department of Labor has made the right decision to include Michigan’s steelworkers in this program to help them find new good-paying jobs. I am committed to helping workers who are losing their jobs because of trade. It’s also critical that our manufacturing jobs are staying in America,”  said Senator Stabenow.


“I’m glad these Michigan workers will receive the Trade Adjustment Assistance that we requested they receive, so that these hardworking men and women can access skills training and find new opportunities,” said Senator Peters. “I’ve fought for policies to encourage the use of American iron and steel because Michigan workers can outwork anyone when given the chance. I’m committed to doing everything we can to make sure they can provide for their families and continue being the backbone of our state’s economy.”


“The idling of Great Lakes Works sent shockwaves through our community. I told the 1,500 workers affected that I would do everything possible to help. This support through the Trade Adjustment Assistance program is welcome news, but not the end of our work. We must do more to help hard-working men and women affected by unfair trade policies including strengthening US manufacturing and making strong investments in labor. We will continue to work with impacted workers, many who live in my district,” said Representative Dingell.


“I am elated that the U.S. Department of Labor will certify U.S. Steel’s Great Lakes Works Trade Adjustment Assistance for Workers program. This will allow thousands of Michigan steel workers needed benefits that include reemployment services and training in new occupational skills,” said Representative Lawrence.  “This certification will give some peace of mind to those workers and their families who are directly affected by the U.S. Steel facilities being idled.”


“That thousands of Michigan steel workers have finally been granted access to TAA benefits by the Department of Labor is great news, but that they were left to languish in uncertainty for over five months is simply unacceptable,” Representative Tlaib said. “Labor Secretary Scalia must do better by our workers and the communities they call home, not just in Michigan but across the country. The state of U.S. trade is such that these will not be the last workers to apply for TAA benefits—but they should absolutely be the last to wait for a decision as long as they did.”


On January 16, Senators Stabenow, Peters, and Representatives Dingell, Lawrence, and Tlaib sent a letter to U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia urging him to grant Trade Adjustment Assistance benefits to support workers at U.S. Steel’s Great Lakes Works operation in Southeast Michigan.


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