Blog: April 2011

Human Rights Defender, Charles Hector, Sued Over Blog Exposing Labour Abuse

The punitive lawsuit against Mr. Charles Hector only accentuates the harsh reality of Burmese migrant workers in Malaysia, who do not speak the local language, face exploiting and indifferent employers and agents, unhelpful embassies, limited access to justice and collective bargaining and insufficient monitoring and protection from the authorities. Mr. Charles Hector advocates through a credible channel on complaints of rights abuses to the public and expresses the growing concern of conditions for millions of workers.

The Goals and Mechanism to Achieving Stability, Democracy and Peace among Workers in the Ivory Coast

The ongoing social, political and military conflict in the Ivory Coast has additionally shifted to political, ethnic and religious unrest. The Republic of Cote d’Ivoire has experienced two coups d’état and one civil war since it gained its independence in 1960 from France. Following the 2002-03 civil war, the West African country was spilt between the north and south.

Return Our Mural

One of the horrified passersby who witnessed this scene was another Rose, Rose Schneiderman. An immigrant like Rosie, Rose taught herself English while working in a sweatshop then began a life as an organizer for the International Ladies Garment Workers Union.

“We Are One” rally recognizes Domestic and International struggle for Workers Rights

Although the rally was largely organized in light of the most recent attacks on US labor rights, the commitment to recognize a diverse group of individuals was evident. Participants could be heard chanting “The people, united, will never be defeated!” and held signs that read “I am a woman, I am a worker, we are one” and “I am a man, I am a worker, we are one”.

UFCW Local 1994 “We Are One” Event

Cuffie introduced Gino Renne, President of Local 1994, who spoke of the county budget issues in the larger context of the events in the Midwestern US.   He connected the current situation with the circumstances that led to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on April 4, 1968.  King had gone to Memphis TN to support the largely African-American sanitation workers who were demanding union representation and the respect and dignity that would come with it.

Mexican Congress Rushes to Pass Regressive Labor Law

  • adjust hours regardless of a contract;
  • enter individual contracts instead of union contract;
  • pay less wages for unfairly dismissed workers;
  • engage with “protection contacts” that fragment democratic unions; and 
  • set arbitrary minimum wage and work condition standards without the possibility of review or objection.

The law would also make it even more difficult to certify democratic unions, further undermining the ability of workers to oppose abusive working conditions.

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