Department of Labor acknowledges trade agreements harmed Montevideo Technology

Jun 13, 2008 Issues: Foreign Affairs

(WASHINGTON, DC) – The U.S. Department of Labor last week ruled that workers at Montevideo Technology, Inc. are eligible to apply for assistance designed to address adverse effects of trade agreements that send U.S. jobs overseas.

Certification to apply for Worker Adjustment Assistance (WTA) and Alternative Trade Adjustment Assistance (ATAA) was awarded to Montevideo Technology on June 4, and workers who have become partially or totally separated from employment on or after May 9, 2007 through June 4, 2010 are eligible to apply.

After an investigation, the Department of Labor determined that there was a shift in production from Montevideo Technology, Inc. to Mexico of articles that are like or competitive with those produced by the company, which produces small, high precision electric motors.

“For years I have had serious concerns about and voted against these so-called free trade agreements like NAFTA and CAFTA that are hurting our rural businesses,” Peterson said. “It makes no sense for Congress and the Administration to pass these trade agreements when they do not provide protection for workers and small businesses that have to compete with unfair labor practices around the world.”

In order for employees of Montevideo Technology to be eligible for WTA and ATTA, the Department of Labor must agree that the employees lost their jobs as a result of increased imports or shifts in production out of the United States.