Colombia

Colombia Workers, Community Win Landmark Pact

  • June 10, 2017
  • Nathan Benevides

After 22 days of peaceful protests, workers, unions and other civil society groups in Buenaventura, the country’s largest port city, won a landmark agreement with the Colombian government. On June 6, the government agreed to invest more than $500 million in the long-neglected city over the next decade. United Nations officials,  senators and local politicians… [READ MORE]

Buenaventura Port Workers Call for Formal Jobs

The Colombia Port Workers’ union is calling on the Ministry of Labor to follow up on promises it made during a congressional hearing this week and resume discussions with the union and the Buenaventura Port Society over formalizing 3,500 illegally outsourced workers in Buenaventura, Colombia’s largest port. Solidarity Center union partners, organized within the Mesa… [READ MORE]

Workers Bring Colombia’s Largest Port to a Halt

  • May 19, 2017
  • Solidarity Center

Workers in Buenaventura, Colombia, who are waging an indefinite work stoppage to call attention to the lack of jobs, good wages and basic public services in their community, have brought port operations and local commerce to a halt. As the country’s largest seaport, Buenaventura accounts for 60 percent of the country’s maritime trade and in… [READ MORE]

Colombian Unions Remain Committed to Peace Process

  • October 12, 2016
  • Solidarity Center

In the wake of Colombia’s narrow rejection of a peace accord and the subsequent bestowing of the Nobel Peace Prize on the country’s president last weekend, Colombian trade unions vowed to remain part of the process to end the Western Hemisphere’s longest war and work toward a more inclusive society. On October 2 and to… [READ MORE]

Colombian Sugarcane Workers Prevail after Attacks

  • March 11, 2015
  • IUF

SINTRAINAGRO, affiliated with the global food, farm and hotel union IUF, won direct, permanent contracts for cane cutters at the Risaralda mill in western Colombia’s Cauca Valley. The breakthrough agreement was signed on March 5 after 500 cane cutters launched an indefinite strike on March 2 and were brutally attacked by state anti-riot forces and… [READ MORE]

Armed Attack on Colombian Union Leaders

  • March 2, 2015
  • IUF

Gunmen fired on a car carrying Guillermo Rivera and Medardo Cuesta, president and treasurer, respectively, of the Colombian rural workers union SINTRAINAGRO, as they were meeting February 24 with members in Valle del Cauca. Their vehicle was hit by bullets but the two were unharmed thanks to the reaction of Cuesta’s bodyguard. The National Protection… [READ MORE]

Make the Colombia Labor Rights Action Plan Work for Workers

The governments of Colombia and the United States signed the Labor Action Plan (LAP) three years ago this week. The plan was intended to provide a road map for Colombia to protect internationally recognized labor rights, prevent violence against labor leaders and prosecute the perpetrators of such violence. As a new AFL-CIO report shows, systemic… [READ MORE]

Afro-Colombian Labor Activists Power Ahead with Dynamic Agenda

Ready to power forward with new grassroots organizing and mobilization outreach, 127 Afro-Colombian labor and community leaders met in Bogotá in recent days for the second national forum of the Afro-Colombian Labor Council (CLAF). During the two-day gathering, Afro-Colombian labor rights activists shared the organization’s successes—among them, the amazing growth of the Domestic Service Workers’… [READ MORE]

Colombia: Many Women Workers Face Job Discrimination

In Colombia, “even when there’s an improvement in the overall economy, women don’t see any improvement,” says Sohely Rua Catañeda. As a result, many women who are unable to secure formal employment are forced into the informal sector to support themselves and their families, laboring as domestic workers or street vendors. Women in these low-paying… [READ MORE]

Colombia: Afro-Descendant Domestic Workers Form Union

Afro-Colombian women recently launched the Union of Domestic Service Workers (Unión de Trabajadoras del Servicio Domestíco, UTRASD), the first-ever union in Colombia created entirely by Afro-descendent women. UTRASD President Maria Roa Borja says she hopes to increase the union’s membership so it can become a powerful actor in defense of domestic workers’ rights. “I am… [READ MORE]

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