US and Mexico settle a labor dispute at a Panasonic plant in Mexico – AméricaEconomía

The United States and Mexico on Thursday announced the resolution of a labor dispute at the Panasonic auto parts plant in the Latin American country, which sees workers receiving a wage increase above inflation.

The US Trade Representative’s office said the deal includes a Panasonic Automotive Systems facility in the northern city of Reynosa, which borders the United States, “where workers were previously denied freedom of association and collective bargaining rights.”

Workers are expected to receive a 9.5% wage increase under a contract negotiated by a newly elected independent union, as domestic inflation approaches 8%, its highest level in more than 21 years.

This settlement is the second time a case reviewed under the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (TMEC) has helped workers achieve wage increases after incorporating an independent union of their choosing.

General Motors workers in Silao, central Mexico, received an 8.5% increase in negotiations between the company and its new consortium in early 2022.

In addition to canceling bargaining with the powerless union, the Panasonic factory agreed to cancel it, recognize an independent union, Snitis, and compensate workers for union dues withheld from paychecks and unpaid wages for the factory strike, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) said. . Panasonic also hired 19 workers who were fired after what they said was retaliation for their support of Sunitis.

“We are pleased that the Office of the United States Trade Representative has completed proceedings under the TMEC Rapid Response Action Mechanism, and that the United States and Mexico agree not to continue to disenfranchise our employees,” Panasonic North said. America to Reuters.

Panasonic added that it fully supports the freedom of association and collective bargaining rights of its employees.

Mexico’s Ministry of Labor has confirmed that all issues raised in the investigation have been resolved and that it will monitor the plant to ensure that reassigned employees can support the union of their free choice.

“Today’s announcement is another example of the Biden-Harris administration’s commitment to defending the rights of workers, including those who live outside our borders,” US Trade Representative Kahryn Tay said in a statement.

The incident marks the third US labor complaint under the TMEC which seeks, among other things, to improve working conditions in Mexico.

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