Flanked by Nabisco workers, elected officials, and faith leaders, Interfaith Worker Justice launches international investigation into outsourcing of Nabisco jobs

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Media contacts:

Ian Pajer-Rogers, Interfaith Worker Justice | ipajer-rogers@iwj.org 

Nate Zeff, BCTGM Local 300 | natezeff@gmail.com

Photos from the event can be found here.

Full video of the event can be found here. 

CHICAGO (August 30, 2017) — Interfaith Worker Justice (IWJ), one of the largest faith-based organizations in the United States focused on worker issues, held a press conference on Wednesday in Chicago to announce an investigation and issuance of subsequent reports into Mondelēz’s/Nabisco’s decision to outsource hundreds of well-paying jobs to a new production plant in Salinas, Mexico.

The investigation will include details on how such outsourcing has impacted hundreds of working people and their communities.

In the mid-1990s, Nabisco accepted $90 million in taxpayer subsidies from Illinois as incentive to maintain its production plant in Chicago. Today, Nabisco/Mondelēz is abandoning the very people who invested in the company two decades ago by summarily closing production facilities and sending jobs abroad.


Below are excerpted quotes from featured speakers at the press event.

From Michael Smith, former-Nabisco employee who was laid off from the Chicago bakery in March 2016:

“I, and 600 Chicago citizens each with their own families, our stories, and our community were displaced by Mondelez, owner of the iconic Nabisco brand that included Oreos, Chips Ahoy, Ritz, Honey Grahams and other products. Those workers in Mexico are subjected to yet another economic tragedy: paying them there, for work we did here, around $1 an hour.”

From Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia:

“This is about ensuring economic justice and development in Mexico AND in the US. It’s great that Interfaith Worker Justice has joined this struggle for sustainable economic development on both sides of the border. We want working people to have good paying jobs that create healthy communities and ensures the development and the advancement of communities everywhere.”

From Alderwoman Susan Sadlowski Garza:

“It’s a sad, sad day, brothers and sisters, when hundreds of middle class jobs are eliminated because of the corporate bureaucrats who put profits before people.”

Rev. Doug Mork, Pastor at Cross of Glory Lutheran Church:

“Workers, of course, turn to their union to fight this injustice and the bakery workers have been leading a fight against global exploitation, community destruction, and all of these unjust practices. These practices violate our faith values. They suggest that people serve the economy, and not the other way around. They erode our God given dignity and the justice intended for all people.”

Rev. Ken Brooker-Langston, Disciples Center for Public Witness:

“Our spirit tells us to do justly with one another, not to mistreat our neighbor, mnot to oppress the poor, and something very important to our gathering here today, not to rob workers of their wages.”

The seven-city tour that kicks off in Chicago will include Portland, OR; Richmond, VA; Fairlawn, NJ; Atlanta; Salinas, Mexico, and Washington, DC.