USW Calls On Mexican Government to Locate Disappeared Union Activist

CONTACT: Ben Davis, 202-550-3729, bdavis@usw.org (Pittsburgh) – The United Steelworkers (USW) union today called on the government of Mexico to take immediate action to locate Oscar Hernández Romero, a union leader and community activist from Cócula, Guerrero who has been missing since September 23. 

Hernández is a leader of opposition to Canadian mining company Torex Gold Resources, which fought an organizing campaign by the independent union Los Mineros in 2018.  Los Mineros suspended their organizing after three union supporters were murdered. No one has been arrested for these crimes.

On Friday, Los Mineros filed a lawsuit on behalf of Hernández’s family demanding that the government investigate his disappearance.

“The Mexican government must act immediately to locate Oscar Hernández Romero and to investigate the murders of the workers killed during the organizing campaign,” said USW International President Tom Conway.

“The continued lack of protections for unionists in Mexico highlights the need for enforceable labor standards in the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement and additional resources in Mexico’s labor budget,” Conway said.

The USW has also demanded that the Canadian government hold Canadian mining companies accountable for human rights violations in other countries. 

“This disappearance underscores why Canada needs an independent human rights ombudsperson with real powers to investigate when there are allegations of human rights violations related to Canadian companies,” said USW Canadian National Director Ken Neumann.

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining, the service and public sectors and higher education.

 

 

 

 

 

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