January 16th, 2013 by salloy
Wall Street private equity giant Kohlberg Kravis Roberts is threatening to move 128 decent, family-wage manufacturing jobs at the Sealy factory in North Portland to a non-union facility out of state. More than 1000 Working Families supporters spoke out last week — but they still haven’t budged.
But we’ve still got leverage. Here’s why: the state of Oregon has over $3 billion in public funds invested in KKR.  We don’t think that the state should be investing in a firm that uses Oregon money to kill Oregon jobs.
Working Families supporters across the state are calling on Oregon Investment Council to take our state funds out of KKR if they take jobs out of Oregon.
Here’s what a few of you had to say:
“Then I recommend to the Governor and finance committee that their contract should not be renewed or continued. If they move out of state the contract should be null and void.”
-Richard, Grants Pass
“Oregon can move the 3 Billion state government investments to another company too you know…”
-Irene, Pilot Rock
“If [KKR] moves the factory out of state, I think Oregon needs to find someone else to manage our investments–period.”
It’s not too late to pressure KKR into keeping the North Portland Sealy plant running. KKR handles billions of dollars a year in Oregon public investments, and losing that contract would be a big incentive to keep these jobs in Oregon. But, they won’t change course without public pressure.