For too long, American trade policy has been driven by the interests of large multinational corporations. From NAFTA and the WTO to more recent deals with Colombia and Korea, corporate wishes have been granted — from creating a private justice system that’s only open to foreign corporations, to making it easier to source from countries with low labor standards, to limiting food-safety rules, these agreements have hurt the middle-class jobs, pushed wages down and reduced capital investment in the United States. Small businesses, Florida-based manufacturers, working families and communities have suffered.
Now we face two new trade agreements based on this corporate agenda — the Pacific TPP and the Atlantic TTIP. Our ability to shape these agreements to put forth a more positive agenda for U.S. workers, producers and communities is limited by the secrecy of the trade negotiations.
I and other members of the Hialeah Gardens City Council passed a resolution opposing TPP.
Florida’s working people worked hard to make the TPP more transparent. Unfortunately the deal concluded without incorporating rules that would help raise wages and promote inclusive economic growth. We still have a chance with the TTIP, but it will take many voices and lots of sunlight to succeed.