Marketplace Scratch Pad

Will Obama save his suits?

Scott Jagow May 11, 2009

Workers at a Chicago-area suit manufacturer are voting this morning on whether to hold a sit-in. They would just stay at their factory positions and refuse to leave. They’re protesting the fact that bailout recipient Wells Fargo may force parent company, Hartmarx, into liquidation. The workers make suits for President Obama.

From a press release about the sit-in:

The Hartmarx workers’ struggle sounds the alarm on what could be a firestorm of job losses and company closures perpetuated by U.S. financial institutions. Ruby Sims who has worked at Hartmarx for 31 years states “I can’t believe that a bank that got some of this [TARP] money would turn around and do us like this.”

Hartmarx filed for bankruptcy in January, but Wells Fargo is now trying to liquidate the company.
The Illinois state treasurer has said if that happens, the bank will “not be doing business with the state of Illinois any longer.”

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.