PITTSBURGH, June 19, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An independent investigation of the Finnish auto parts company PKC in Mexico found widespread violations of workers’ rights, including firing workers who tried to form an independent union, and sexual harassment of female employees.
The Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), an independent labor monitoring group supported by U.S. universities, yesterday released its detailed investigation of violations committed by PKC at its plant in Ciudad Acuna, Mexico. PKC is a global auto parts company whose clients include Chrysler, Ford, General Motors, Volkswagen and Volvo.
Reacting to the report, USW International President Leo Gerard stated: "The WRC report shows how multinational companies use Mexico's weak labor laws to undermine workers' human rights. PKC must immediately reinstate the fired union leaders and follow the report's other recommendations."
He adds: "The Mexican government must demonstrate that it can protect the rights of its workers before it is allowed greater access to U.S. markets."
The report found that PKC imposed a company union without the knowledge of its workers, harassed and threatened workers who attempted to join the independent Mexican Mine and Metalworkers' union, manipulated an election to defeat the Mineworkers, and fired independent union supporters. The WRC also documented sexual harassment at PKC facilities.
The USW has supported the Mineworkers' campaign to build democratic worker organizations in Mexico and has a Solidarity Alliance with the independent union -- also known as Los Mineros. In March, one of the fired PKC union leaders, Ana Maria Mendez, addressed 1,000 delegates at the USW international women's conference in Pittsburgh.
The WRC report is available at http://workersrights.org/
Contact: Gary Hubbard, 202-256-8125, firstname.lastname@example.org
SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)