IMF Condemns Mexican Labour Laws

February 6, 2009, 1:33 PM EST

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The International Metalworkers' Federation has lodged a complaint against the Mexican government regarding laws that prevent freedom of association and ignore international guarantees of core labour standards.

The IMF complaint calls on the International Labour Organization (ILO) to condemn Mexican laws such as those that allow the vast majority of collective agreements to be so-called "protection contracts."

Under protection contracts, workers are forced to join unions nominated by company management rather than one of their own choosing.

In practice, the laws mean that only unions with the support of companies and government can operate in Mexico, an IMF news release states. The law doesn't require democratic structures in which contract demands are discussed and decided or where collective agreements are voted on by employees.

The IMF's complaint urges the ILO to:

-         condemn a systematic violation of freedom of association;

-          call upon Mexico to properly transpose ILO Convention 87 (which guarantees core labour standards) into national law;

-         and to promote democratic structures in the industrial relations of Mexico.

The IMF represents 25 million metalworkers in more than 200 unions in 100 countries. The CAW is a member union of the IMF.

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