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WELCOME TO THE ARCHIVE (1994-2014) OF THE MAQUILA SOLIDARITY NETWORK. For current information on our ongoing work on the living wage, women's labour rights, freedom of association, corporate accountability and Bangladesh fire and safety, please visit our new website, launched in October, 2015:

Act now: 50 more fired at Vaqueros Navarra this week

October 18, 2007

Pending further developments, MSN is not requesting further action on this case. 

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Support Mexican garment workers fired for supporting independent union

Workers at the Vaqueros Navarra blue jean factory in Tehuacan, Puebla, Mexico who are fighting for the right to be represented by an independent, democratic union are being harassed, illegally dismissed, pressured to sign resignation letters, and threatened with a factory closure. The employer has brought in a government-affiliated “official union” and has given it free reign inside the factory to recruit and intimidate workers. A number of the illegally fired workers have filed complaints for unjust dismissal, but the local labour authorities are delaying acting on their cases while the company dismisses more workers – over 50 in the last week.

Take Action Today

Please join the Maquila Solidarity Network in calling on the Puebla State Governor to intervene in the case to ensure that all unjustly fired workers are immediately reinstated and that a free and fair union representation vote (recuento) is held without further delay. 

Mario Marín Torres
Gobernador Constitucional del Estado de Puebla
Casa Aguayo, 14 Ote. #1204, Barrio El Alto
Puebla, Pue. C. P. 72000 -- Mexico

Estimado Gobernador Marín Torres:

I am writing to urge your government to take immediate steps to ensure that the workers at the Vaqueros Navarra factory in Tehuacan, Puebla have the right to be represented by the union of their choice without employer or government interference.

We have received disturbing reports indicating that management at Vaqueros Navarra has unjustly dismissed more than 100 workers – 50 of whom have been dismissed in the last few days – for the crime of exercising their fundamental human right to organize for the purposes of bargaining collectively with their employer.

Reports also indicate that the company is harassing and intimidating workers affiliated with the Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Industria de la Costura, Confección, Similares y Conexos Diecinueve de Septiembre while allowing organizers affiliated with the Confederacion Regional Obrera Mexicana (CROM) to actively campaign within the factory, despite the fact that it does not hold title to the collective agreement, something which is illegal under Mexican labour law.

Meanwhile, the Junta Local de Conciliación y Arbitraje has accepted other petitions for title to the collective agreement thereby clearly demonstrating its intention to prolong the conflict for an indefinite period, to the benefit of the employer and to the detriment of the workers. 

We would therefore strongly urge you to personally intervene in this case directly with Grupo Navarra, in order to ensure that the company: 

  • Immediately ceases the ongoing dismissals and harassment of workers associated with the September 19 union;
  • Immediately ceases its active promotion of the CROM within the factory;
  • Immediately ceases all management interference with the right of the workers to freely select the union and union representatives of their choice; and
  • Immediately reinstates all workers who have been unjustly dismissed.

Moreover we strongly request that you use your authority as constitutional governor to ensure that state labour authorities under your charge respond immediately to the workers’ petition to be represented by the September 19 union by holding, without further delay, a free and fair recuento by secret ballot and in the facilities of the Junta Local de Conciliación y Arbitraje de Tehuacan. 

I will be monitoring the situation closely to ensure that the recuento is held without further delay and in a free, fair and transparent manner in which the internationally recognized right of workers to be represented by the union of their free choice without employer or government interference is fully respected.

Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this important matter. We look forward to receiving a report on the actions the Puebla labour authorities are taking to ensure that the Vaqueros Navarra workers’ associational rights are respected.

Yours truly,

José Antonio López Malo Capellini
Secretario del Trabajo y Competitividad del Estado de Puebla

Jorge Ramos Lobato
Presidente de la Junta Local de Conciliación y Arbitraje del Estado de Puebla

Jorge Nakid,
Administrative Director, Grupo Navarra

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