Union members belonging to several MTD affiliates circulated across Capitol Hill on Tuesday to thank members of Congress and their staff for their ongoing support of the Jones Act.
Led by MTD Executive Secretary-Treasurer Daniel Duncan and Executive Board Member Brett McCoy (from the United Association), nearly 75 brothers and sisters worked with AFL-CIO Metal Trades Department President James Hart and Dredging Contractors of America Executive Director and CEO William Doyle for a rally outside the steps of the Capitol before heading to legislators’ offices.
Duncan, Hart and Doyle spoke about the importance of the Jones Act for the nation’s economic and domestic security. They pointed out that the Jones Act directly and indirectly provides “approximately 500,000 decent, family-sustaining American jobs resulting in nearly $100 billion annually for the economy.” In addition, American mariners working on Jones Act vessels offer security on the nation’s inland waterways and harbors.
Representatives from the MTD-affiliated Electrical Workers; Machinists; Seafarers; Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers; Transportation-Communications Union and United Association donned red, white and blue “Jones Act All American” lapel stickers to show their appreciation. Each legislator or their aide received a booklet containing Jones Act facts and figures, including the six-month data revealing 114,000 containers have been delivered by American-crewed Jones Act vessels since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico.
Union members met with US Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Doug Jones (D-AL), Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Richard Shelby (R-AL) as well as US Representatives Rick Larsen (D-WA) and Linda Sanchez (D-CA). They also discussed the Jones Act with aides from other Senate and House offices representing both political parties reflecting the continued strong bipartisan support of the measure, which has helped protect US national, economic and homeland security for nearly a century.