PILMA Applauds Senator Casey (D-PA) For Biopharmaceutical Job Creation Efforts

PILMA Applauds Senator Casey (D-PA) For Biopharmaceutical Job Creation Efforts

The Pharmaceutical Industry Labor-Management Association (PILMA) today applauded Pennsylvania Senator Robert Casey’s record of leadership on the issue of creating high-quality jobs in the life sciences sector. This afternoon the senator will be joined by Dave Holveck, CEO of Endo Pharmaceuticals, to advance the discussion of promoting innovation in the industry that leads to job growth.

Senator Casey knows first-hand the critical link between public policies that enable the U.S. pharmaceutical industry to remain globally competitive and putting people to work in good-paying, high-quality jobs. This past fall Senator Casey toured Sheet Metal Workers Local 19 Training Center in Philadelphia, joined by union and company representatives to identify ways of working together to spur jobs and innovation in the industry. Today he is taking that hands-on experience and translating it to an important discussion about the role that Congress can play in supporting the men and women who make a living in the pharmaceutical industry.

PILMA recently released an in-depth report on the very subject of today’s event, “Jobs Today: Cures Tomorrow—Innovation and the Biopharmaceutical Industry”. In our report, we note that the United States has “the opportunity to create jobs and strengthen U.S. global competitiveness by both promoting and expanding biopharmaceutical industry investment in R&D.”

The ultimate goal, of course is better patient outcomes. Across the country, working men and women are utilizing the latest innovations to build and maintain facilities, research and find cures to diseases and enhance and sustain the lives of all Americans.

We look forward to working with Senator Casey and members of both parties to advance a pro-innovation, pro-jobs agenda based on creating a business environment that enables the life sciences sector to continue to thrive here in the United States.

Click here to learn more about Senator Casey’s tour of Pennsylvania’s SMWIA Local 19 Joint Apprenticeship & Training Center.

America Invents Act Will Spur New Cures

America Invents Act Will Spur New Cures

September, 2011

The Pharmaceutical Industry Labor Management Association (PILMA) applauds the passage of the America Invents Act and encourages President Barack Obama to sign the bill into law.

In a demonstration that Republicans and Democrats can come together in the name of jobs, the Senate voted 89 to 9 on September 8th in favor of a historic overhaul of our nation’s patent system. For industries such as the life science sector, which supports over 9 million jobs in the U.S., innovation is the key to staying globally competitive. This bill will help protect American pharmaceutical patents, spurring research to discover additional life saving cures and putting union members to work.

The member companies and unions of PILMA see this as an important step in the broader effort to strengthen intellectual property protections. We are committed to working with our allies in Congress from both sides of the aisle to continue moving this agenda forward.

Keep America Inventing: William Burga

Keep America Inventing: William Burga

June 14, 2011

William Burga, Past President of the Ohio AFL-CIO, wrote the following op-ed published in the Cleveland Plain Dealer urging passage of the 2011 America Invents Act (AIA). “This long-awaited plan to strengthen protections for intellectual property will create jobs without spending taxpayer dollars, and it will help Americans continue to lead in the ongoing global technology revolution,” says Burga.

Click here to read the full article online or in pdf.

PILMA: Patent Reform

PILMA: Patent Reform

March 8, 2011

The Pharmaceutical Industry Labor Management Association applauds tonight’s decisive action by the Senate in passing the 2011 Patent Protection Act. The strong 95 to 5 vote is a solid indication that the bill meets the concerns from both sides of the aisle. This measure will unlock U.S. innovation and support good jobs. It provides the framework for simplifying the patent protection process while enhancing U.S. competitiveness. We congratulate Chairman Leahy for his work in developing this legislation and his determination in seeing it through to passage. PILMA will continue to support this bill as it moves to the House, working with our friends on both sides of the aisle to make sure that it is not weakened as it goes through the legislative process.

A strong patent system is crucial to American competitiveness as the country focuses on job growth and rebuilding.

Intellectual property—such as patents—provide three key factors that help drive the economy: they promote incentives for innovation; they provide holders with certainty regarding their rights; and they provide enforcement tools to defend one’s property. Biopharmaceutical innovation is costly and risky. However, by maintaining a predictable and reliable patent system, Senator Leahy’s bill, in its current form, would help to encourage the innovation that provides jobs and leads to real and significant healthe benefits for America’s patients.

From PILMA’s Jobs & Innovation Report – Patent Reform

Pages 8-9

IP protections and their enforcement ensure inventors and innovative companies that their investments in time, money, and human capital will be protected if they are successful, and that they will have the opportunity to earn a potential return on their investment. For the biopharmaceutical sector, investments in R&D require certainty, security, and predictability, as well as a clear and stable legal environment.

Reforming the patent application and approval process must protect the integrity of the system and ensure appropriate exclusivity for creators, so that their creations may drive innovation and create jobs. We must be vigilant that America’s patented innovations are protected and strengthened. The biopharmaceutical industry is among the most advanced technological sectors in the world economy, and is heavily dependent on strong, vigorously enforced intellectual property rights as a means to balance the substantial risks involved in R&D with the promise of appropriate rewards for success. Unless such rights are protected from infringement, we are in danger of losing one of America’s foremost industries.

Other countries are studiously observing our developing patent reform policy. We need to be careful that we don’t improve our competitors’ positions rather than strengthening our own. Public policy changes that would allow public access to patented information early in a patent’s protected period, coupled with early non-court-based patent challenges, would facilitate international competitors’ challenges of our patent rights. Further, such action would be costly and tie up the patent holder with challenges during a substantial portion of the use-and-sell period.

Other Resources

PILMA’s resolution on patent reform [to be added].
Summary of the America Invents Act
Comments from Senator Patrick Leahy on Floor Schedule for Patent Reform Act.
Washington Post Editorial: Why the Patent Process Should be Overhauled [to be added].

Reaction to the President’s State of the Union Message from Michael J. Sullivan, PILMA Chair

Reaction to the President’s State of the Union Message from Michael J. Sullivan, PILMA Chair

January, 2011

“As we saw tonight, the momentum exists to advance a national innovation agenda, one that stands to benefit millions of union members. But now comes the hard part: what can the administration and Members of Congress specifically do to translate this into new jobs and a higher quality of life for working Americans? The president did a great job of selling the need for a greater focus on innovation and competitiveness, but to do so we must identify which specific sectors and policy areas stand to have the greatest short and long-term impact here at home. In other words, where do America’s working families have the most to gain? How can we continue to bring business and labor together?

We believe the answer lies in a strong medical innovation agenda that takes advantage of our greatest resource: the American worker.”

Michael J. Sullivan is General President of the Sheet Metal Workers International Association, AFL-CIO, and serves as Chair of the Pharmaceutical Industry Labor-Management Association.