Bye bye CTM? A legal battle starts for the new collective bargaining agreement in GM

Note published on August 20 in El Financiero, Economía [Economy] Section by Felipe Gazcón and César Cantú.
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The Department of Labor has 20 days to issue the resolution declaring the CCT as gone.

After the rejection of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CCT) of the Miguel Trujillo Union of the CTM at the General Motors Plant in Silao, a long process is expected; at this moment, the Department of Labor has 20 days to issue the resolution declaring the CCT finished, stated Pablo Franco, president of the Union of Jurists of Mexico.

“What follows, if the workers decide so, is the process to obtain a new CCT; the rights that the workers may have from the previous agreement are maintained; what will no longer exist  will be collective bargaining negotiation until they have a new CCT”, he explained,

For her part, the Secretary of Labor, Luisa María Alcalde, pointed out that workers will maintain all of the rights and benefits that they had in their CCT, but now through individual contracts.

“When the vote was announced, the Miguel Trujillo López union recognized it, which reflects the spirit of responsibility and civility that must rule the new labor model; there is no doubt that listening to the workers with transparency and a self-critical sense is essential to improve and build a strong and representative unionism”, she announced.

However, in a statement, the Trujillo union accused the dependency of having committed irregularities and it threatened to challenge the results.

Meanwhile, representatives of Generando Movimiento stated in a conference that they will seek the registration of a union and that they believe that they will achieve this, “if we have already won a battle, I believe that we can win the war”, they said.

Óscar de la Vega, of De la Vega & Martínez Rojas, said that the US authorities will be closely watching union conflicts in Mexico, particularly in high export sectors.

“This is just the start of many, many more complaints that will arise in sectors that are strategic for the Americans”, he said.

In the opinion of Juan Carlos Baker, founding partner of Ansley Consultores, and former sub-secretary of Foreign Trade, the improvements to the labor law could open the path to a constant flow of claims against firms in Mexico.

“I believe that, all in all, it is an improvement… we have to be careful that it does not evolve into a permanent claim against the Mexican unions”, he warned.

The US approves of the elections

Nevertheless, the US government gave its approval to the result of the union vote of the General Motors plant located in Silao, (Guanajuato).

“The vote results announced today are another important demonstration of the role of the USMCA’s rapid response mechanism in getting prompt and meaningful results for workers”, said Katherine Tai, trade representative of the US, in a statement.

“The United States will continue to work with our Mexican counterparts – including through the use of the rapid response mechanism – to protect the rights of North American workers”, said the ambassador.

With information by Luciano Vázquez.