More than 1,000 United Steelworkers (USW) members, their families, allies, lawmakers and U.S. Steel Corp. officials rallied Monday outside the company’s Lone Star, Texas, plant to spotlight the dumping by foreign manufacturers of specialty steel products vital to energy production and to urge the U.S. Commerce Department to enforce the nation’s anti-dumping trade laws.
Failing to fully enforce our trade laws puts more than 500,000 American jobs on the line and risks outsourcing the benefits of America’s energy boom.
One USW member urged Washington to create a level playing field for the nation’s steel industry:
We cannot compete in an unfair market. We need our trade laws enforced. We make the best steel in the world. As long as Washington enforces the rules, we can compete with anyone.
The products are Oil Country Tubular Goods (OCTG), and the U.S. industry is being squeezed by dumped imports from South Korea and other nations.
There is overwhelming evidence that these foreign OCTG products are being illegally dumped in the U.S. market—at prices below fair value and in deceptive ways designed to circumvent international trade laws.
Last year, the USW and U.S. steel manufacturers filed a case with the Commerce Department and a ruling is expected later this month or early July.
Click here and tell your elected officials you’re counting on them to stick up for America’s workers when the Commerce Department makes its critical ruling in the OCTG trade case.
Rallies are scheduled for June 16 in Fairfield, Ala., and June 23 in sites to be determined in Minnesota and Virginia.
This article was originally posted on AFL-CIO on June 3, 2014. Reprinted with permission.
About the Author: Mike Hall is a former West Virginia newspaper reporter, staff writer for the United Mine Workers Journaland managing editor of the Seafarers Log. He came to the AFL- CIO in 1989 and has written for several federation publications, focusing on legislation and politics, especially grassroots mobilization and workplace safety.