The Communications Workers of America (CWA), which represents workers at the only unionized semiconductor fabrication plant in the U.S., celebrated the passage of the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) Act by the U.S. House of Representatives today.
“The CHIPS Act is a step forward in strengthening U.S. competitiveness and creating good jobs for American workers, and a crucial part of rebuilding our manufacturing sector as a whole. This investment in America’s workforce, and American ingenuity, will undoubtedly strengthen our ability to compete on a global scale,” said CWA President Chris Shelton. “There is no question that we need a comprehensive approach to compete and take on China’s unfair trade practices, and this bill is a great first step in putting that approach together.”
Among the provisions advocated by CWA, including $200 million towards a dedicated workforce and education fund, the bill includes key protections to prevent companies that receive funding from turning around and investing in semiconductor production in China instead.
“The passage of the CHIPS Act is going to drive a huge amount of investment in semiconductor manufacturing across the country, and CWA is ready to help thousands of workers organize to join our union to ensure that the middle-class shares in this investment,” said Carl Kennebrew, President of CWA’s IUE-CWA Industrial Division. “For those workers, this bill will be a ticket to a better life. I hope that Congress sends this bill to President Biden’s desk immediately, and continues working to strengthen our competitiveness and create good jobs for American workers.”
CWA members at the onsemi plant in Mountain Top, Penn., fabricate semiconductor chips that power the electric vehicle, solar power, battery storage, 5G, medical, aerospace, and smart appliance industries. It is currently the only union-represented final assembly semiconductor manufacturing workforce in the United States.