On 9 July, the multinational tyre manufacturer unfairly dismissed dozens of workers employed at its plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico, for setting up an independent, free and democratic trade union. Two months later, the workers’ fight for justice continues.
Every week, the workers gather at the factory gates to protest against the company’s actions and to win the support of their fellow workers. They have also urged other employees to set up an independent union so that a genuine collective agreement that is based on the relevant union contract can be implemented within the company.
The former workers recently set out their demands, which included being given their jobs back and ensuring that workers at the plant enjoyed all the benefits provided for in the union contract for the Mexican rubber industry.
Goodyear attempted to avoid implementing the union contract by imposing its own individual contract, bringing in a “collective employer protection contract” that had been signed with the leader of the corrupt and non-independent Confederation of Mexican Workers (CTM), Tereso Medina.
“In recent weeks, the workers have filed a petition with the San Luis Potosí State Congress calling for the protection contract to be annulled and for state legislators to stand in solidarity with the workers,”
said the political advisor to the former workers, Francisco Retama.
“They have also urged federal legislators in both houses of the national Congress to unite behind the workers and to hold a debate on the conduct of Goodyear, which has violated the workers’ labour rights,” he added.
Mexico’s freshly elected federal authorities have stated that they will ensure that workers can freely elect their representatives, which will result in employer protection contracts being phased out. Furthermore, on Thursday, 20 September, the Senate will debate and vote on the ratification of International Labour Organization Convention 98 on the right to organize and collective bargaining.
“IndustriALL Global Union and its affiliates stand with the Goodyear workers in their fight for justice and have united behind them on numerous occasions. We condemn the behaviour of Goodyear’s management team in San Luis Potosí and the clear lack of respect that has been shown for the workers’ fundamental rights. We will take further steps to support the workers, particularly at the company’s head office in the United States,”
said IndustriALL’s general secretary, Valter Sanches.