by Clyde Weiss | March 24, 2016
The Oreo cookie, the best-selling cookie in the United States since it was introduced by Nabisco in 1912, is as American as apple pie. Or, at least it used to be – and that’s a problem for America’s middle class workers.
Nabisco’s parent company, Mondelez International, is moving forward with plans to lay off 600 workers at its Chicago bakery where the cookie is produced, and transfer those good American jobs to production lines in Salinas, Mexico.
Mondelez International is not closing the Chicago plant, just cutting approximately half its current work force. But it is unconscionable that a company that reported 2014 revenue of more than $30 billion is eliminating good-paying American jobs to a lower-wage country simply because it failed to get $46 million in annual contract concessions from the three unions that represent workers there.
The company is taking its first steps to move the jobs to Mexico by laying off about 300 workers who are members of the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers Local 300. The union represents approximately 1,000 workers at the Chicago plant.
The company’s decision to outsource these good middle class jobs has already become an issue in this year’s Presidential election contest. But politicians should not have to tell Mondelez International that its best interests lie not in maximizing profit at the expense of American workers. It should be simple common sense and decency. After all, Oreos are an American institution.
AFSCME stands with Chicago’s Nabisco bakery workers and the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers, in urging Mondelez International to reverse its decision to outsource their jobs. Please support these workers by buying only American-made Nabisco products. You can find out how at its “Check the Label” campaign website. Also, sign their petition to save American jobs, and check out their video.
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