Wyden, Brown Release Statement Following Vote for Independent Union By Tridonex Workers in Mexico
Sindicato Nacional Independiente de Trabajadores de Industrias y Servicios “Movimiento 20/32” (SNITIS) Elected to Represent Workers in Matamoros, Mexico Tridonex Plant; Union Representation is Result of Brown-Wyden Rapid Response Mechanism in USMCA that Helps Enforce Fair Labor Practices & Address Off-Shoring by Allowing Workers in Mexico to Report When a Company is Violating their Rights
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, issued the following statement following news that workers at the Tridonex auto-parts plant in Matamoros voted overwhelmingly in favor of the independent union Sindicato Nacional Independiente de Trabajadores de Industrias y Servicios “Movimiento 20/32” (SNITIS). SNITIS, an independent Mexican union, will replace the incumbent “protection” union. This vote follows a similar result for the General Motors facility in Silao, Mexico, last month.
Wyden and Brown fought for and successfully secured an important worker-empowering provision as part of the United States Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), enabling workers to bring cases alleging labor violations at the facility level for the first time. This provision ensures that when corporations are held accountable for treating workers fairly, regardless of where those workers are located, companies no longer have an incentive to move jobs abroad – thereby protecting workers on both sides of the border.
“The overwhelming vote in favor of the independent union SNITIS in Mexico is a testament to the power of organized labor. We put in place the Brown–Wyden rapid response mechanism (RRM) to fight the race-to-the-bottom that encourages outsourcing and depresses wages for American workers, by supporting Mexican workers’ struggles to achieve better wages and working conditions. The Brown-Wyden labor enforcement provision in USMCA is working: when we stand with workers in Mexico, we lift up American workers. We look forward to the company recognizing and bargaining in good faith with the new independent union,” said the Senators in a statement.
The Brown-Wyden provision that the senators secured in USMCA represents the first-ever overhaul of labor enforcement tools in a trade agreement since the United States started negotiating trade deals. The new agreement allows workers in Mexico to report when a company is violating their rights and seek immediate action if it is determined that workers’ rights have been violated. The Brown-Wyden RRM allows for penalties when corporations violate labor protections including giving the United States authority to prevent goods from coming into America if companies continue their anti-worker tactics.
In May 2021, Wyden and Brown issued a statement of solidarity with workers following the announcement from the AFL-CIO, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), SNITIS, and Public Citizen that they filed the first complaint under USMCA’s Brown-Wyden RRM, against Tridonex.
Keith Chu (Wyden) (202) 224-5244
Trudy Perkins/Geoff Knight (Brown) (202) 224-3978
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