WASHINGTON, Dec. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Mark H. Ayers, President of the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO, released the following statement today upon passage of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2011 by the U.S. House of Representatives:
"Unemployment among American construction professionals today remains 13 percent nationally and in many areas, well over 20%. Without question, this constitutes a prolonged crisis of unemployment and underemployment. For them, and for all Americans struggling to find work, the federal Unemployment Insurance program has been a lifeline of support. America's Building Trades Unions have long urged Congress to pass a 'clean' extension of this valuable and critical program.
Likewise, our unions have been steadfast supporters of the Keystone XL pipeline, a project that is truly 'shovel-ready' and a privately funded endeavor that would put significant numbers of American skilled craft professionals back to work under a project agreement that ensures safe and efficient construction.
Regrettably, both of these issues have now been usurped and transformed into political pawns, where political posturing supersedes the need to create sound public policy that benefits working Americans. The 'Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2011' that was approved by the U.S. House of Representatives today is simply more of the same. The political games must end. President Obama should immediately grant a presidential permit for the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline, and congressional Republicans should craft and pass a 'clean' unemployment insurance extension; because partisan politics has never paid a mortgage or put food on anyone's table."
The Building and Construction Trades Department is an alliance of 13 national and international unions that collectively represent over 2 million skilled craft professionals in the United States and Canada
SOURCE Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO