WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) joined a Mahoning Valley call center worker on a news conference call to highlight his legislation to keep call center jobs in Ohio. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. lost 200,000 call center jobs between 2006 and 2014. 

“Most Americans want to support American jobs by buying American whenever they can and that includes the customer service they get from call centers,” said Brown.

Brown’s bill, the U.S. Call Center Workers and Consumer Protection Act, would:

  • Give preference in federal contracts to companies that haven’t relocated call center jobs overseas.
  • Require U.S. companies to identify the location of the call center and allow the customer to be transferred to a call center located in the U.S. if asked. 
  • Require companies to notify the Department of Labor (DOL) before they relocate call centers and create a public list of companies that outsource call center jobs.

The list of companies that offshore call center jobs would be maintained by DOL and be available for public reference. Any companies on the list would be ineligible for federal grants or loans, with an exception for national security or substantial job loss in the U.S. Federal agencies would also be required to give preference to U.S. employers that do not appear on the list.

Brown was joined on the call by Renee Rouser, a call center worker from Youngstown, to discuss the importance of protecting call center jobs in Ohio. 

We want and need these good decent jobs in the U.S. We want to put the money back into our economy. Instead corporate greed is being put in front of responsible and professional work. We as the employees should not be competing against call centers located in the Philippines, Mexico and other areas,” said Rouser.

Brown is highlighting his legislation to keep jobs in Ohio as a new report from the Communications Workers of America shows big banks are aggressively offshoring call center jobs outside of the U.S., even after the same big banks disproportionately benefitted from the recent tax bill. Brown pushed for an amendment to the Senate tax bill to reward employers who keep jobs in the United States and pay workers well – encouraging them to create even more good-paying jobs in the U.S. Senate Republicans voted down Brown’s amendment.

This week, Brown is also continuing to lead the charge against efforts to roll back consumer protections that put taxpayers at risk of more bank bailouts.