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Mexico remains under ILO’s spotlight

10 September, 2015IndustriALL Global Union proposes critical measures to end the pattern of protection contracts in Mexico that destroys all possibility of genuine social dialogue. These measures must also address the tripartite system of Labour Boards made up of government officials, business, and corrupt official labour unions which obstruct workers’ self organization.

Labour rights in Mexico will again be under discussion in the next ILO Committee on the Application of Standards, during the June 2016 International Labour Conference.

IndustriALL affiliates and a coalition of allied unions in Mexico have compiled a list of cases for examination by the Committee of Experts on Applications and Recommendations Meeting in November 2015, documenting the systematic practice of employer protection contracts at all levels of the economy, as well as the brutal repression and criminalization of workers trying to organize their own unions.

The diversity of the cases gathered by the workers and unions to present to the ILO confirms the extent of the phenomenon, with examples of the struggles and resistance in the mining sector including in Cananea; in the automotive sector where the workers of Honda in Jalisco have been fighting for over four years for a union election; the publicly celebrated employer protection contract signed by BMW in 2014 in San Luis Potosi five years before the plant is built, the exploitation and intimidation of farm workers from San Quintin by the official charro unions, (CTM and CROC in this case); the institutional violence against workers in the auto parts industry in Ciudad Acuña-PKC, Monclova; the denial of PEMEX and the Labour Courts to allow the registered union UNTyPP to organize and negotiate on behalf of the white collar workers in the petrol industry, the intimidation of SANDAK/BATA workers from the Leather and Shoe industry, and the list goes on.

As the Mexican unions denounce in their Report to the ILO, the unions from the public sector in Mexico City are not better off in relation to protection contracts and harassment of democratic unions. Cases cited include in the education sector, technological institutes, Universities and civil servant unions.

Moreover as Conventions 150 and 155 related to the mining sector also fall under this current reporting cycle, a report addressing the intolerable number of incidents, the lack of fair compensation for workers and their families and the failure of the Government of Mexico to comply with the labour inspections and Health and Safety standards, has been submitted to the Committee of Experts.

Critical measures to address the problem of protection contracts and to deal with the corruption in the Labour Boards are outlined in the Comments presented by IndustriALL.

IndustriALL Global Union assistant general secretary Fernando Lopes said:

Despite the many promises and public declarations made by the Government officials after the last ILC, to “eradicate protection contracts”, IndustriALL demands the agreement of a roadmap with all social partners, including ILO technical support, to take concrete actions and measures to bring the Labour legislation in line with the ILO supervisory mechanisms.