In the 1980s, Bow, N.H., businessman Jon Bresler owned Suncook Woven Label, a textile company that employed 55 highly skilled workers and made fabric labels for designers like Polo Ralph Lauren, Gap Inc., J.C. Penney and Disney. He owned one of five successful weaving companies in New Hampshire.
Today, all of those weaving businesses are closed.
Bresler’s business failed in 1989 when he couldn't compete with international prices after NAFTA passed and China joined the World Trade Organization (WTO). Currently Bresler owns and operates a union-shop print sales agency.
Outsourcing American jobs is why Bresler joined working families and the New Hampshire AFL-CIO yesterday to deliver American-made flags and a message to Rep. Frank Guinta (R-NH): Bring Jobs Home.
"We were one of five successful woven label companies in New Hampshire, employing three generations of highly skilled weavers. Now, every one of those companies has shut its doors as a result of our skewed trade laws. The fact is that we were overtaken by a force larger than anything a small business can overcome. Our leaders need to embrace solutions like the Bring Jobs Home Act if we really want to help small businesses stay open and stop the erosion of American manufacturing."
Working people delivered the flags and petitions from hundreds of Granite Staters to Guinta with a plea to take a stand against outsourcing and support the Bring Jobs Home Act. More than 30 workers and community activists handed out fliers at Manchester's City Hall Plaza before meeting with representatives from Guinta's office.
The U.S. Senate is set to vote on the Bring Jobs Home Act (S. 2884)—a bill that would stop companies from taking a tax deduction for moving expenses when they ship jobs overseas—soon. Participants called the Bring Jobs Home Act an important first step in a comprehensive plan to end incentives for offshoring.
“We cannot continue to say we want to create jobs while rewarding corporations with taxpayers’ money when they ship production, jobs and innovation overseas. Those doing well in America ought to do right by America. That’s simple fairness and basic patriotism,” said Mark MacKenzie, president of the New Hampshire AFL-CIO.
Congressman Guinta has previously made a lot of noise about his commitment to creating jobs. But his job fairs have produced more photo ops than jobs, and he’s voted to cut unemployment benefits for the workers who need them most. The Bring Jobs Home Act is a common sense solution and an important first step in addressing our jobs crisis. If Congressman Guinta really supports creating American jobs, he should vote for this bill.
Along with the Bring Jobs Home Act, which the House Republicans voted down yesterday, working families also are pushing for a call center bill that would bar companies that send call center jobs overseas from receiving federal grants and tax breaks.
Working people are calling on lawmakers to:
- Address currency manipulation by other countries, which is a key driver of offshoring;
- Tax the overseas income of U.S. corporations the same way we tax their domestic income, so they can no longer lower their tax bill by shifting income and jobs overseas; and
- Push for fair trade policies that benefit workers—not just multinational corporations.
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