The Governments of Mexico (GoM) and the United States (USG) have invited the International Labour Organization (ILO) to participate as the international observer during a vote to confirm a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) at the General Motors (GM) plant in Silao, Mexico.
This request is part of the agreed GoM/USG course of remediation, announced on 8 July 2021. It addresses a request by the USG to review whether workers were denied the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining and relates to concerns of irregularities preceding, during and surrounding an earlier vote at the plant.
The request was submitted through the Rapid Response Labor Mechanism (RRM) of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
The objective of the vote, which is scheduled to be held on 17-18 August, is to determine whether the workers at the GM plant confirm or reject the existing Miguel Trujillo López Trade Union CBA.
ILO officials will be at the factory both before and during the vote to observe conditions and actions that may either support or hinder a democratic environment free from harassment and intimidation, and that workers are able to vote in a personal, free and secret manner. The ILO officials will also observe workers access to accurate information on the CBA.
The ILO will follow its practices and procedures in collecting information on this process and will share its observations to the GoM and USG. The GoM will announce the results of the vote within a period of time yet to be determined. The ILO will publish a statement at the end of the process.
CBA’s are the result of negotiations between unions or workers’ organizations that represent the interest of workers, and employers or employers’ organizations to determine the terms and conditions of employment. These typically includes wages, working hours and overtime, benefits and the relationship between the parties.
The ILO and its members – which are government, workers’ and employer’s organizations of 187 countries – have determined that freedom of association and collective bargaining are fundamental rights, protected globally by ILO conventions on this subject. Mexico has ratified both ILO conventions on this category of rights (ILO Conventions 87 and 98) and has passed national legislation to protect worker and employer rights.