Note published on March 16 in El Economista, Empresas [Companies] Section by María del Pilar Martínez.
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James M. Stone, from the Jackson Lewis Firm, stated that in the new administrative structure, the Democratic Party is sympathetic toward unions, as is the Secretary of the Department of Labor and, therefore, there is a real risk that complaints will be filed due to the denial of the rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining.
To the extent that the commercial agreement with the United States and Canada progresses through the USMCA, which includes, for the first time, a labor chapter, the American infrastructure is also reconfiguring itself and, with the support of Joe Biden’s new administration, it becomes more demanding toward Mexico with the use of labor panels, supervisors who intend to monitor the performance of work centers in regard to compliance with labor rights.
This has been detected by American labor specialists, who have pointed out that appointments in the administration of President Biden are more closely linked to workers and “with union leaders; without a doubt, an interesting point is that they seek to appeal to North American groups because they feel that Mexicans have taken many job positions and, therefore, they want to review collective bargaining agreements exhaustively.”
During his participation in the panel “The change of government in the United States, effects on Mexico. Labor challenges, 2021”, which was conducted virtually, James M. Stone, from the Jackson Lewis Firm, stated that in the new administrative structure, the Democratic Party is sympathetic toward unions, as is the Secretary of the Department of Labor and, therefore, there is a real risk that complaints will be filed due to the denial of the rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining.
“American industrial unions are aware of this whole situation at an international level, it is a great opportunity to help Mexican unions to organize their workers. This is what the United States administration is working on and it has mobilized key people in the government; I believe that the United States government has experience in these matters and is truly taking into account the change in Mexican legislation”, he explained.
In this regard, Óscar de la Vega, founding partner of the Mexican Firm DM Abogados, explained that “it is very interesting that the United States is focusing on certain industries, the cost of labor in Mexico is very cheap and the aerospace industry in Mexico is huge; nevertheless, we are facing a change in the rules, this will no longer work in the same way and changes are progressing quickly; we also have the question of 50 plus 1 to achieve true representation; thus, this is the time for them to approach the company in order to continue negotiating.”
Additionally, James P. Verdi, of the Jackson Lewis Firm, added that President Biden has addressed labor matters as never before, “he’s been supporting unions, labor disputes, USMCA mechanisms and he has a bill; he will clearly take action with the unions, in the meantime we have tools to be able to speak with all members of the administration; unions must be considered as an important part of their electorate, in addition to seeking a different perspective on labor matters and an agenda with international relations to do better business and have better cooperation.”