From 18-24 February, unions around the world will be taking action in solidarity with our fellow workers in Mexico, one of the world’s emerging economies, and part of the G20. Previous posts on this site have explained how Mexico’s employers have used legislation, the courts and sometimes even paramilitary forces to attack trade unions. Now the global trade union movement is pushing back, led by global manufacturing union federation IndustriALL: although Mexico has strong unions in many sectors, the main battleground is the manufacturing industry which produces goods for export to the USA under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
In the UK, the TUC will be working with Unite and others to put pressure on the Mexican Government, raise awareness of the issue with a public meeting on Wednesday evening, and encouraging people to take an e-action in defence of a specific group of workers at Finnish-owned firm PKC. US trade unionist Ben Davis has written in the Morning Star about the week of action and union campaigns.
A TUC delegation will be visiting the Mexican Embassy on Monday 18 February to hand in a letter from TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady and another from the leaders of Workers Uniting, which brings together manufacturing unions in several countries – including Unite in the UK and Ireland and the USW in Canada and the USA. The TUC delegation will include :
- UCU General Secretary Sally Hunt, who is the General Council international spokesperson;
- CWU General Secretary Billy Hayes (also president of the UNI global union’s telecommunications sector);
- Unite Assistant General Secretary Tony Burke; and
- TUC member of the ILO Governing Body Sam Gurney.
You can find out more about the plight of Mexican workers and the global campaign of solidarity on the IndustriALL website.