Accepted paper:

Globalized Workers and Trade Unionism in Mexican maquiladoras

Authors:

Maria De La O (Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropologia Social)

Paper short abstract:

In the paper I examine some characteristics of worker organizations in the US-Mexican border. I propose that the official unions maintained a strong relationship with the Mexican State and were aligned with the interests of capital. Thus unions are not able to defend workers rights.

Paper long abstract:

In this paper I examine some characteristics of worker organizations in a strategic region of maquiladora influence: the US-Mexican border. I propose that a significant majority of official maquiladora unions maintained a strong relationship with the Mexican State and were aligned with the interests of capital. Therefore, they were unable to defend workers' rights, and this explains the presence of independent trade unions and transnational organizations as alternatives. I will describe how Mexican unionism works in order to understand trade unions in maquiladoras as a complex relationship among traditional unions, independent unions, worker coalitions, and transnational solidarity networks. Then I will explain unionism in the northern border region where a struggle and fragmentation among the main maquiladora unions and grassroots organizations took place.

panel P060
Globalized workers and trade unionism