Say no to Nabisco’s Global Labor Exploitation

March 1, from noon-1 in the Diamond Lake room of the EMU.

Hear from laid off Nabisco workers about the pressing need to end global worker exploitation. Nabisco has joined the corporate race to find the lowest wages globally so that a few executives and shareholders can boost their already unprecedented earnings. The workers at the now-closed industrial bakery in the heart of Chicago ask for your support. Join them and hear about real-time effects of corporate globalization. And please share news of their tour to the UO.

This is no jingoistic campaign about protectionism. Instead their story reveals the ugly underside of global corporations who use their power and influence to hollow out working class communities in cities across the U.S. The union bakers in Chicago literally built the iconic brands and treats by Nabisco.

In July 2015, Nabisco announced it had chosen to invest an additional $130 million in its new $400 million plant in Salinas, Mexico, instead of investing that money in its iconic plant in Chicago. By making the decision to send production to Salinas, Mexico, Nabisco is eliminating hundreds of middle class jobs in this heavily African American and Hispanic community in southwestern Chicago.

Nabisco’s decision to send production to Mexico continues a decades-long pattern of closing plants in the U.S., Canada and other industrialized countries, eliminating thousands of jobs and shifting that production to low-wage countries like Mexico, India and Bahrain where workers are vulnerable to exploitation. These countries have few, if any, environmental, health & safety, or food safety laws to protect workers, citizens and the environment.

Over the last 20 years, Nabisco has closed plants in Pittsburgh, Houston, Niles, St. Elmo, Buena Park, Philadelphia and Toronto. Plant closures devastate communities and families, as well as state and county tax bases. Making matters worse, in Chicago, in the 1990’s Nabisco took $90 million in subsidies from Illinois taxpayers; twenty years later they are essentially abandoning the taxpayer’s investment.

Nabisco’s continued corporate policy of closing plants to take advantage of low-wage workers has been a windfall for its top executives and largest shareholders. Over the last eight years, Mondelēz CEO Irene Rosenfeld has raked in approximately $170 million in compensation. Billions more went to the largest investors in dividends and stock buybacks.