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Tue Apr 10, 2012, 01:17 AM

In case you missed it: Good moves by the Obama administration

EPI applauds new Labor Department immigration rules that protect U.S. and foreign workers

By Ross Eisenbrey and Daniel Costa

Today the U.S. Department of Labor released a set of comprehensive regulations that will govern foreign labor certification in the H-2B guest worker program. We strongly support the new regulations and commend Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, the Department of Labor and the Obama Administration for acting to protect the interests of unemployed U.S. workers and H-2B guest workers. The rules are an important measure that will help fix a program in which instances of abuse, fraud and exploitation have been common, as revealed by government reports and investigations, as well as media coverage.

“The updated H-2B program will help put unemployed U.S. workers back to work by requiring employers to do more to recruit them before the department approves requests for foreign workers. The rules will also protect foreign H-2B workers from exploitation in the recruitment process by banning foreign labor recruiters from charging certain fees and requiring employers to pay visa and travel costs.

<...>

“In May of last year, we submitted detailed public comments to the Labor Department in support of the new rules. Hundreds of other organizations and individuals submitted public comments, and the department has carefully and meticulously reviewed them. The department’s lengthy analysis, released today in conjunction with the rule, does an excellent job of considering and addressing the concerns of employers and worker advocates. The final rule strikes a fair and appropriate balance between the concerns of all stakeholders involved in the H-2B program.”

The following are some of the most important elements of the H-2B rules:
  • Employers will be required to provide U.S. workers in similar positions at least the same wages and benefits provided to H-2B workers, including transportation costs.

  • An online H-2B job registry for U.S. jobseekers will be created.

  • U.S. and foreign workers will be protected from retaliation for engaging in concerted activity.

  • Employers will be required to guarantee workers a total number of work hours equal to at least three-fourths of the workdays in each 12-week period.

  • Employers will be required to keep records documenting their recruitment of U.S. workers and to accept referrals of unemployed workers from state workforce agencies.
http://www.epi.org/publication/epi-applauds-labor-department-immigration/


Hoffa Praises Obama For Crackdown on Unfair Trade Practices
February 28, 2012

Statement of Teamsters General President

(WASHINGTON) – The following is a statement by Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa on President Obama’s executive order today creating the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center:

“President Obama did exactly the right thing by ordering a new panel to crack down on trading partners – including China – that break the rules established by our trade agreements.

“The President is making a serious effort to curb the abuses that have harmed millions of American working families. Wages are falling and jobs are going overseas because of practices such as intellectual property theft and illegal subsidies.

“The Interagency Trade Enforcement Center involves a significant commitment of resources and expertise to stop unfair trade practices. Congress must give President Obama strong bipartisan support as he tries to combat this problem, which is such a concern to America’s middle class.”

Founded in 1903, the Teamsters Union represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Visit www.teamster.org for more information. Follow us on Twitter @TeamsterPower.

http://www.teamster.org/content/hoffa-praises-obama-crackdown-unfair-trade-practices


Executive Order -- Establishment of the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center
EXECUTIVE ORDER

- - - - - - -

ESTABLISHMENT OF THE INTERAGENCY TRADE ENFORCEMENT CENTER

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to advance U.S. foreign policy and protect the national and economic security of the United States through strengthened and coordinated enforcement of U.S. trade rights under international trade agreements and enforcement of domestic trade laws, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Policy. Robust monitoring and enforcement of U.S. rights under international trade agreements, and enforcement of domestic trade laws, are crucial to expanding exports and ensuring U.S. workers, businesses, ranchers, and farmers are able to compete on a level playing field with foreign trade partners. To strengthen our capacity to monitor and enforce U.S. trade rights and domestic trade laws, and thereby enhance market access for U.S. exporters, executive departments and agencies (agencies) must coordinate and augment their efforts to identify and reduce or eliminate foreign trade barriers and unfair foreign trade practices to ensure that U.S. workers, businesses, ranchers, and farmers receive the maximum benefit from our international trade agreements and under domestic trade laws.

- more -

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/02/28/executive-order-establishment-interagency-trade-enforcement-center


Obama launches trade case against China over raw materials
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002419556



6 replies, 1491 views

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Reply In case you missed it: Good moves by the Obama administration (Original post)
ProSense Apr 2012 OP
marybourg Apr 2012 #1
ProSense Apr 2012 #2
Kablooie Apr 2012 #3
ProSense Apr 2012 #4
Enrique Apr 2012 #5
ProSense Apr 2012 #6

Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 01:25 AM

1. Nice compilation. Thank you.

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Response to marybourg (Reply #1)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 02:05 AM

2. You're welcome. Thanks. n/t

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 03:30 AM

3. Ayn Rand must be spinning in her grave.

or at least rotting in it.

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 11:48 AM

4. Kick! n/t

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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 11:50 AM

5. I'll add one

releasing the Zelikow memo

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Response to Enrique (Reply #5)

Tue Apr 10, 2012, 12:30 PM

6. It's a outside

"releasing the Zelikow memo"

...the theme of the OP, but I'll take it.

The Zelikow Memo: Internal Critique of Bush Torture Memos Declassified
http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/news/20120403/

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