Date: Sun, 8 Jun 97 09:23:36 CDT
From: (Rich Winkel)
Subject: Strike at Tijuana Hyundai factory

/** 421.0 **/
** Topic: Strike at Tijuana Hyundai factory **
** Written 5:28 AM Jun 7, 1997 by clr2 in **

Labor Alerts/Labor News
a service of Campaign for Labor Rights

Workers at Hyundai truck chassis factory near Tijuana call for support

From Support Committee for Maquiladora Workers, 7 June, 1997

Workers at the Han Young de Mexico maquiladora, which produces chassis and platforms for tractor-trailer trucks for Hyundai Precision America, refused to enter the plant in Tijuana on June 2 to demonstrate their unified demand for union recognition. A majority of the workers have expressed their support for an independent union.

While the company's failure to pay utilidades, the 2 % profit-sharing bonus required under Mexican labor law, was the immediate impetus for the work stoppage, the workers' overriding concern is for the health and safety problems in the plant. Welders are often not provided with appropriate facial shields, gloves, coveralls or safety shoes. Some workers are losing their vision, and many experience a burning sensation in their eyes due to constant exposure to lead fumes. Workers exhibit burns on their hands, chests arms and clothing.

While the workers assemble and weld at least 26 chassis daily, and the chassis sell for $1800 each, they make 280-360 pesos ($33-$46) weekly. Workers complain this is not enough for their basic necessities. Han Young employs 125 workers. Current production involves a large contract Hyundai has to produce trucks for the US Marines.

The Han Young maquiladora, like most maquiladoras in Tijuana, pays a government-connected "union" known as the Confederacion Regional de Obreros Mexicanos (CROM). Workers do not participate in any meetings of the "union" and have never seen a copy of its contract with the company. It is a standard practice by the maquiladora industry to pay for "protection contracts" against independent organizing by workers.

It is clear that international pressure can play a key role in the Mexican government's inclination to recognize the workers' right to organize a union of their own and in the company's decision to bargain with the union. The Support Committee urges you to send letters immediately to the Mexican Labor Board (Junta de Conciliacion y Arbitaje) with copies to the Governor of Baja California and Hyundai and Han Young, expressing our solidarity with striking workers.

Demand recognition of maquiladora workers' rights to organize their own union!

Please fax letters to

Antonio Ortiz, Presidente
Junta de Conciliacion y Arbitraje
011-52 (66) 86 33 00
If that number does not answer, call 011-52-66-86-32-14 and say you want to send a fax.

Please fax copies of the letter
Govenor Teran Teran

Ted Chung, President
Hyundai Precision America
(619) 293-7264

Won Young Kang, Gerente General
Han Young de Mexico

Support Committee for Maquiladora Workers
(619) 295-5879

For further information, contact the Support Committee for Maquiladora Workers at Craftsmen Hall, 3909 Centre Street, #210, San Diego, CA 92103, (619) 542-0826.