Governor Kitzhaber reaffirmed his commitment to workers' rights, family wage job creation and a sustainable health care delivery system today in an address to Oregon workers gathered on the steps of the State Capitol.
"Together we can create jobs, lead the way on health care, and deliver to our children the kind of Oregon we believe in," Governor Kitzhaber said. "The labor movement built the middle class in this country and we can't rebuild it without the labor movement."
The Governor promised Oregon would not go the route of Wisconsin and applauded state workers for their contributions to the state. He emphasized the importance of role collective bargaining plays in managing workplace issues at a negotiating table with mutual respect.
"I'm working with unions and business to bring more industrial land into production and make sure the industrial land that we have is used to produce good, long-term, family wage jobs," said Governor Kitzhaber.
Last week, Governor Kitzhaber announced Shimadzu U.S.A. is the latest advanced manufacturer to make a significant commitment to Oregon, expanding its operations in Canby. The company will create both construction and high tech jobs building a new facility to produce analytical instruments with construction beginning in June of this year.
The Governor also outlined the need to fundamentally change Oregon's health care delivery system to improve public health; improve the quality of care; and reduce the cost of care. To address those concerns the Governor will propose legislation to transform health care delivery through integration of services; incentives for prevention; and community-based management of chronic conditions.
"Health Care can no longer be allowed to grow at double digit rates. If it does, it will continue to rob resources from workers wages, from school funding, and from our common social infrastructure," said Governor Kitzhaber.