Union claims Harley-Davidson sending jobs to Thailand after closing plant in Kansas City

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A labor union for Harley-Davidson met with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) this week to criticize the motorcycle maker after it announced plans to build a plant in Thailand while closing a factory in Missouri.

The union has specifically criticized Harley-Davidson for investing in the Thailand factory after receiving massive tax cuts from the GOP tax plan. 

“These companies are taking tax breaks with one hand and handing out pink slips with the other,” International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers President Bob Martinez Jr. told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Wednesday. “I’m going to call it like I see it … this is a corporate ambush on working people.”


Despite pleas from lawmakers to keep the Kansas City factory open, Harley has decided to close it, a move that will result in approximately 800 lost jobs.

The manufacturer announced it would be creating 400 additional jobs by building a factory in York, Pa., just over 1,000 miles from its Kansas City location.

The union claims some of the jobs are going to Thailand.

The company has denied any connection between Kansas City and Thailand. 

“The plant under construction in Thailand is a separate and unrelated issue. Part of our long-term strategy is to grow our international business to 50 percent of our annual volume by 2027. The Thailand facility will allow us to be competitive and provide riders greater access to our brand and our products in an expanding global marketplace,” the company said in a statement obtained by the Journal Sentinel.

Tags harley davidson Kansas City metropolitan area Nancy Pelosi

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