Press Release

Schumer, Gillibrand Announce U.S. Dept. of Labor Trade Adjustment Assistance for Climax Manufacturing Company Workers

Mar 29, 2017

Lowville, NY – U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has approved Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) for workers at the Climax Manufacturing Company in Lowville. The approval of the TAA certification means former workers are now eligible to apply for TAA benefits. Last May, Senators Schumer and Gillibrand called on the Department of Labor to approve the certification for Climax Manufacturing, Inc.

“I am pleased the Department of Labor heeded our calls to aid Climax Manufacturing workers and their families as they transition to new employment,” said Senator Schumer. “These benefits will aid workers who lost their jobs through no fault of their own. I will continue to fight tooth and nail to not only secure these benefits for Upstate New York’s workforce but also to push Congress to invest in policies, like rebuilding and repairing our infrastructure, to create jobs and spur economic activity, even as we do more to help displaced New Yorkers get back on their feet and to develop the skills they need to stay competitive and find their next job.”

“This much-needed Trade Adjustment Assistance will help ease the burden for Climax Manufacturing workers as they look for new jobs,” said Senator Gillibrand. “While we work with local officials to attract new good-paying private sector jobs to the area, we must also ensure that workers who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own have the support and resources they need to get back on their feet and secure good-paying jobs.”

“The United Steelworkers Union is elated with the recent determination on the Trade Adjustment Act for the Workers at Climax Manufacturing who lost their jobs on April 1st,” said Jim Ridgeway United Steelworkers (USW), International Representative. “While still reviewing the details of this announcement, the USW is proud that they spearheaded this action on behalf of their laid off workers. This program is in place to help employees who have lost their jobs due to in part foreign imports. While this does not bring those particular jobs back, it does extend unemployment benefits and offers training and relocation dollars to help those displaced workers move forward. We had political support from both sides of the aisle, and extend our thanks to all involved. This is not just a win for labor, it is a victory for the North Country!”

For over a century, the Climax Manufacturing Company served as a leading manufacturer in Lewis County before closing last April. Following the intervention from Senators Schumer and Gillibrand for the TAA, approximately 157 workers are now eligible for this assistance by the Department of Labor. Workers eligible for the TAA include those who became unemployed on or after April 6th, 2015.

TAA is a federal program established under the Trade Act of 1974. Workers whose employment is adversely affected by increased imports and shifts in production outside the U.S. may apply for TAA, which provides a range of benefits and reemployment services, such as the following:

  • Training for Employment in another Job or Career. Workers are eligible for training in occupational skills, basic or remedial education, or training in literacy or English as a second language. Workers may also receive employment services such as case management, skills assessment, and job search assistance.
  • Income Support. Workers can receive weekly cash payments called trade readjustment allowances (TRA) after a worker’s unemployment compensation benefit is exhausted and during the period in which a worker is participating in an approved full-time training program.
  • Job Search Allowance. Workers can get reimbursed for expenses incurred in seeking employment outside their normal commuting area.
  • Relocation Allowances. Workers can receive reimbursement for approved expenses if they are successful in obtaining employment outside their normal commuting area and they need to relocate.