Guatemalan workers received support from an unexpected quarter this week. A group of global clothing brands (including the Gap, Liz Claiborne, Nike, Under Armour, American Eagle, Adidas, PVH and PF) and an association to which they are affiliated with, the Fair Labor Association, wrote to the Government of Guatemala to urge it to move swiftly to reach a satisfactory resolution to a complaint filed four years ago by the AFL-CIO and six Guatemalan unions under DR-CAFTA (the Dominican Republic-Central American Free Trade Agreement).
Countering comments by Romney economic adviser Vin Weber that corporate taxes need to be lowered and deregulation pushed forward, Trumka noted that George W. Bush followed that same prescription with the result that after his eight years as president,
there were fewer jobs in America when he left office then when he came into office. If those were such a great prescription, why did they almost destroy the economy?
Each day in 2010, 13 workers on average were killed on the job—some 4,690 workers—and an estimated 50,000 died from occupational diseases, according to the AFL-CIO's annual report, “Death on the Job: The Toll of Neglect.” Released today, the report shows the number of those who died in 2010 (the most recent year for which data are available) is up from the 4,551 people who perished in 2009. This trend has continued since 2004, the first year in a decade that saw the number of deaths on the job increase.