Global Trade Agreements
The “Berkeley Resolution to Protect Democracy and the Public Interest from TAFTA & TPP Trade Agreements” cites specific ways these agreements would rob Berkeley of needed economic protection for jobs and local business and would threaten financial stability.
During the debate, Councilmember Kriss Worthington, who introduced the resolution, noted that chapters of the TPP would impose limits on the ability of governments to tackle climate change and to require green purchasing by government.
Also during the debate, Councilmember Max Anderson observed: “I guess we are waiting for the great sucking sound. Our experience should teach us something …these corporate schemes are not enacted in our benefit….”
Phoebe Sorgen, who worked with Diana Bohn of the Council’s Peace and Justice Commission to bring this issue to the City Council, praised the Council saying, "I'm proud to help Berkeley lead again on a global issue with tremendous local impact. May this spread!"
The resolution declares Berkeley to be a TPP and TAFTA Free Zone where Berkeley will not recognize trade provisions and tribunal rulings related to these agreements. Specifically, it states:
“to every extent allowable by law, rules which do not promote the interests of workers, protect the environment, and improve the quality of life in all participating countries and which were negotiated without transparency as well as meaningful congressional and public input, and related tribunals’ rulings, will not be recognized.”
The City Council resolution, which follows similar resolutions passed by Dane County WI and Madison WI on the TPP, encourages communities to take “peacefully powerful actions for self-determination such as becoming TPP/TAFTA-Free Zones.”
Ruth Caplan with the Alliance for Democracy, who first proposed TPP Free Zones on a labor/farm panel at the 2013 Democracy Convention, praised the Berkeley City Council and committed local citizens. “It is time we take action locally and let Congress know we are not going to stand by while corporations hit the jackpot and citizens are left with crumbs,” she said. “It is time to build strong resistance in our communities. To see this resistance start to build around the country is inspiring. We planted a seed and now it is sprouting.”
For more information about the Berkeley resolution contact:
Phoebe Ann Sorgen, Berkeley CA 510-919-6431 phoebeso...//at//...earthlink...//dot//...net
Ruth Caplan, Alliance for Democracy 413-695-8361 rcaplan...//at//...igc...//dot//...org
What about your town?
It is time to make our municipalities “TPP Free Zones,” following in the footsteps of the successful resistance to an earlier trade agreement, the Multilateral Agreement on Investment, which was defeated in 1998 thanks to a global grassroots campaign.
New! Click here to download a .pdf of our TPP Free Zone pamphlet. Print it on legal-size paper, or read the text online here.
Click here for a model municipal law to make your community a TPP Free Zone.
Click here for some pointers in getting a TPP Free Zone law passed.
Educate for action: Our Fall 2013 of Justice Rising focused on international resistance to corporate global trade agreements, including the TPP. If you'd like copies of this issue, or to be on the mailing list for upcoming issues, contact us at afd ...at... thealliancefordemocracy ... org or call 781-894-1179.
There's more information, videos and resources on our TPP page.
Questions? Ideas? Resources? We’d like to hear from you. Contact the Alliance for Democracy office at afd (at) thealliancefordemocracy (dot) org, or 781-894-1179.