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(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Three months after they requested assistance, 1,900 steelworkers at three Washington plants will be eligible for Trade Adjustment Assistance, Sen. Patty Murray said Thursday.

The steelworkers will now be eligible for federal income support, training assistance, and a job search allowance. Murray lobbied the Labor Department to approve the petition for Washington steelworkers.

Workers at the Kaiser Tacoma Rod Mill, the Kaiser Mead plant and the Kaiser Trentwood plant who have lost their jobs will now be eligible for 52 additional weeks of income support and 104 weeks of retraining assistance.

"This assistance is critical for hundreds of steelworkers who have lost their jobs due to forces beyond their control," said Murray. "I am proud to have stood beside these workers and their families to make sure that they have the resources and assistance to get through a difficult time."

With Murray's support and assistance, the United Steelworkers of America filed the petition with the Labor Department on December 21, 2001.

Under the TAA, Kaiser workers will be eligible for:

  • Training: workers may receive up to 104 weeks of approved training in occupational skills, basic or remedial education, or literacy training.

  • Income Support: Trade Readjustment Allowances (TRA) are weekly cash payments available for 52 weeks after a worker's state unemployment compensation is exhausted.

  • Job Search Allowance: reimburses workers for approved expenses if successful in obtaining employment outside the normal commuting area.