October 12, 2010
New research tool illustrates impact of trade policy on our way of life
Public Citizen, a national non-profit that advocates in the public’s interest, has consolidated a wealth of information – some of it previously unavailable to the public – that allows you to research the myriad ways trade policy affects our jobs, environment, and communities into a powerful new online tool – the Trade Data Center.
The Trade Data Center has information for everyone interested in examining our nation’s trade policy, said Travis McArthur of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch initiative:
“Whether you are a seasoned trade hand or just beginning to look into globalization, or whether you are for or against fair trade, the Trade Data Center will have something for you. We hope that this will serve as a resource for journalists, policymakers, researchers, students – anyone with an interest in the impact of trade policy. It really is your one-stop-shop, and we’ll be updating it frequently with new features.”
Some of the information being made available for the first time include:
- Trade-related job loss data that is mapped and searchable by congressional district, county, metro area, state, company name and more, as certified by the Department of Labor;
- Information about foreign countries whose products caused these job losses;
- Information about workers and companies that claimed trade-related job losses but that were denied adjustment assistance by the DOL; and
- A map of the operations of multinational corporations in the eight countries that are currently negotiating a Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. Members of Congress and the public have requested that the Obama administration not include controversial North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)-style investor rights in this deal. If these rights are included, however, this map gives a sense of the sheer quantity and geographic reach of corporations that would be able to use these rights to attack public interest regulations in the U.S. and abroad.
Other information previously made available by Public Citizen has been consolidated into the Trade Data Center, including:
- Comprehensive maps of corporations that could abuse the harmful investor rights under the Korea Free Trade Agreement (unless it is amended from the terms negotiated by the George W. Bush administration);
- Directory and details of NAFTA investor attacks on environmental and public interest legislation in the U.S., Mexico and Canada;
- Comprehensive congressional voting records on trade deals from 1990 to the present;
- Trade policy positions and videos of more than 400 congressional and presidential candidates from the 2006 and 2008 elections; and
- A database of current and proposed U.S. service sector commitments under the World Trade Organization agreements, with an explanation of their implications for environmental and public health policy.
Check it out at http://www.citizen.org/TradeDataCenter.