Americas

Domestic Workers in Mexico Win Landmark Rights Law

Legislation requiring written contracts, paid vacation and annual bonuses for domestic workers passed Mexico’s House and Senate and is expected to be signed into law by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. The landmark law, which also prohibits employers from hiring domestic workers younger than age 15, requires employers provide at least a day-and-a-half off each… [READ MORE]

The High Cost of Low Wages in Haiti: New Report

Haitian garment workers face increasing difficulty in covering basic expenditures as prices soar while wages hover far below the cost of living, according to a new Solidarity Center report. The High Cost of Low Wages in Haiti (2019), a new Solidarity Center survey tracking living expenses for garment workers from September 2018 through March 2019,… [READ MORE]

Brazil Garment Workers’ Union Adopts Women’s Agenda

In a historic achievement, delegates to the 11th Congress of Brazil’s garment worker union federation, CNTRV (National Confederation of Clothing Workers) last week voted for gender parity in leadership and adopted a pro-women’s rights agenda. The union achieved parity not only in the overall number of women and men in leadership, but also in its… [READ MORE]

Brazil Unions Challenge Attacks on Worker, Human Rights

Following the deadly mining dam collapse in January that buried alive 186 workers and residents of the town of Brumadinho, Brazil, and concurrent legislative attacks on worker rights, unions representing members across Brazil are requesting the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) investigate and address both issues. The Vale-owned dam, which sat above Brumadinho, was… [READ MORE]

Union Women Tackle Gender-Based Violence at Work

Women trade unionists in Indonesia and in Honduras and other Central American countries who are tackling gender-based violence at work often start by changing a culture of patriarchy within their own unions, according to speakers at a Solidarity Center-sponsored panel today in New York City. “Unions in the past only focused on economic issues—gender-based violence… [READ MORE]

Colombia Palm Workers Win Landmark Agreement

Some 750 palm workers at Colombia’s largest plantation yesterday signed a landmark agreement with their employer, Indupalma, culminating a years-long effort in which many workers risked their lives to achieve decent wages and safe working conditions. The workers formed a union and fought to force the company to sign a formalization accord and negotiate a… [READ MORE]

Two Union Leaders Targeted in Guatemala

Two union leaders in Guatemala were imprisoned January 17–28 for negotiating and signing a collective agreement between the union and the Ministry of Health authorities in 2013. Following a hearing, both union leaders were released on parole but placed under house arrest, pending a final decision. Luis Alpirez Guzmán, general secretary of the National Union of Health… [READ MORE]

Haiti Union Leader Receives Death Threats

The global labor community is condemning death threats made against Jean Bonald Golinsky Fatal, president of the Confédération des Travailleurs- euses des Secteurs Public et Privé (CTSP) in Haiti. The Confederation of Trade Unions of Workers of the Americas (CSA) and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) are calling on the international community to put… [READ MORE]

Abelina Ramírez: ‘Through Our Unity, We Will Win’

When thousands of farmworkers from Mexico’s coastal state of Baja California waged a 12-week strike in 2015 to protest poverty wages—roughly $4 a day—and poor working conditions like lack of access to water, Abelina Ramírez saw her chance to ensure women’s concerns, such as sexual harassment in the fields, were addressed. “I decided to join… [READ MORE]

Union Leaders Mobilize on Gender-Based Violence at Work

Gertrude Mtsweni and Rose Omamo, trade union leaders from Africa, recently joined hundreds of workers who participated with government and employer representatives in high-level deliberations on a draft global standard addressing gender-based violence at work. Energized after long days of intense discussions during the International Labor Organization (ILO) conference in Geneva, the women are now… [READ MORE]