Maker’s Row and the Manufacturing Revivial in America

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The President hit the road last week to promote his vision for an American manufacturing revival. His vision centers around the creation of manufacturing hubs to rebuild areas devastated by the loss of manufacturing jobs, as well as the addition of high-tech jobs. I’ve been disappointed in recent years hearing politicians belittle the importance of manufacturing and focusing primarily on high-tech and service jobs. While I have advanced degrees, I also keep in mind that there are millions of Americans (including members of my family) who will never have advanced degrees who need to find work in manufacturing, construction, home-building and more. We can’t ignore that need.

As we all know, vulture capitalists have been very successful at shipping manufacturing jobs overseas for low wages and, in some cases, using slave labor. Marc detailed how they’re building a prison labor network┬áin this country to manufacture goods for a salary as low as 1-3 dollars per day, taking good jobs from the working-class and incentivizing the legal system to incarcerate more of our citizens to provide cheap labor. Whether its outsourcing overseas or to prisons in this country, conservatives are creating an environment in which the working-class cannot compete, while simultaneously stripping them of badly needed government assistance and job training. I believe that we all need to do what we can to support our working-class and restore this nation as a manufacturing powerhouse.

makersrowThere is one website that’s working to help companies transition from outsourcing (or offshoring) to insourcing or (reshoring), and bring manufacturing jobs back to this country. Maker’s Row is a network of thousands of U.S. manufacturers with a mission to “make the manufacturing process simple to understand and easy to access”. Designers can search for the right manufacturer to produce their products without the communication and shipping headaches many are experiencing through outsourcing. Their first industry target is apparel and accessories, with plans to branch out into other industries. Outsourcing often requires that companies place large orders to make up for the high shipping costs from countries like China and India. However, through Maker’s Row companies can locate U.S. manufacturers that can produce orders of any size at much lower shipping rates. Based on the stories posted on their site from both designers and manufacturers, Makers Row is a huge success. And the result is more products made in the U.S.A. by the American working-class.

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