Letters to the Editor

Letter to editor: CAT layoffs affect local economy

Dear Editor,

As a lifelong resident of the Peoria area, I understand the importance of Caterpillar to the local economy. Caterpillar recently announced another round of layoffs. This loss of jobs will impact hundreds of Central Illinois families. Sure, this round of layoffs is a relatively small number and may not impact local unemployment numbers much, but Caterpillar has cut 4,800 jobs over the past year and 20,000 worldwide since 2012.
A vibrant, healthy economy needs people to have money to spend on goods and services. This spending creates demand for those goods and services and then creates jobs.
Two policies would help get people back to work with money to spend: 1) rebuild our physical infrastructure and 2) oppose trade deals that harm the United States economy and the local economy. 2016 presidential candidate Bernie Sanders has introduced legislation that would invest $1 trillion over five years to rebuild America’s physical infrastructure.
This investment in roads, bridges, and other transportation projects should create and keep 13 million good-paying jobs. Sanders also opposes unfair trade deals like TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) and NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement). These trade deals drive down wages and send jobs outside our borders. Rebuilding our physical infrastructure and opposing bad trade deals would provide a boost to the local economy.

Sincerely,

Ryan Hidden
rthidden@gmail.com

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