Stop the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP): Add Your Voice

Canadian Labour Congress on the TPPstopTPP

 The TPP is a Conservative deal that’s bad for Canada. Click here to learn more about the reasons why. The government needs to scrap this flawed, Conservative-negotiated deal, and instead deliver on the changes promised to Canadians in the last election. Add your voice and we’ll make sure your message is delivered to the International Trade Minister and your MP, click here.

 

IBEW Canada on the TPPibew1

Our office has been reviewing the text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a free-trade agreement that was negotiated in secret by the Harper Conservatives, and studying the potential impacts it could have on the members in the various sectors of our organization.

We have been working closely with the Canadian Building Trades office, the Canadian Labour Congress and other affiliates to ensure that no detail is left unturned. We have had several meetings with Global Affairs Canada, Canada’s Chief Negotiators on the TPP, and most recently we met with the Minister of International Trade, Chrystia Freeland, along with key staff that were assigned to various parts of the agreement. The key focus for the IBEW in these meetings was our concerns over Chapter 12 – Temporary Foreign Entry, in particular the section that refers to “Professionals and Technicians”. This section specifically highlights several skilled trades’ workers including Electricians.

We believe that under the TPP agreement, foreign multi-national corporations will be able to bid on infrastructure projects, such as ones that the current federal government has promised, and will have the ability to bring their workers, that are covered under “Professionals and Technicians” chapter of the agreement, and completely skirt the rules of an economic means test and the application process of the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) program. That means a contractor could bring over workers from another TPP country, who signed on to Chapter 12,  and do a complete project without being required to hire a single Canadian worker, something that our largest trading partner, the United States of America, has decided not to participate in.

In our meetings with Minister Freeland and Global Affairs Canada, we expressed our grave concerns with this clause. We pointed out our apprehensions around the unqualified workers currently entering Canada under the TFW program, the lack of economic benefit for Canada, the abuse of the TFW program, the lack of enforcement once a TFW enters the country, and the unscrupulous employers taking advantage of the TFW’s.

We are continuing to meet with key stakeholders to discuss Chapter 12, which appears to ensure that that Canadian companies and their workers have the opportunity to secure work in other TPP countries, while not at all focusing on the impact of large foreign companies and their workers coming into to Canada and taking jobs away from Canadians.

CLC

To do your part, check out the Canadian Labour Congress’ campaign to stop the TPP, by clicking here. 


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