UFCW Canada and Mexico's CNC sign historic agreement


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Cuernavaca, Mexico – April 11, 2013 – The National Farm Workers' Confederation (CNC) and UFCW Canada have signed an historic agreement to ensure that the rights of migrant agriculture workers are protected and defended in Mexico, Canada and the United States. The Mexican Secretary of Labour and Social Welfare, Alfonso Navarrete Prida, and Graco Ramirez, the governor of Morelos, attended the event and were honorary witnesses to the agreement.

The mutual cooperation agreement, which was signed on Tuesday by UFCW Canada National President Wayne Hanley and Senator Gerardo Sanchez, President of the CNC, will result in better conditions for migrant Mexican agriculture workers in North America. 

Labour rights training, and proactive monitoring and advocacy are cornerstones of the agreement. To this end, UFCW Canada and the CNC will also be developing a comprehensive database and analytical reports on the conditions facing migrant agriculture workers in Mexico, United States and Canada. This research and analysis will also be used to develop programs to improve access to social programs and benefits such as health, housing, and educational subsidies for the workers and members of their families.

As strategic allies, UFCW Canada and CNC will also share their experience and political strength to give a voice to the concerns of Mexican migrant agriculture workers internationally. 

“As farm workers' unions, we understand that migration has historically been linked to the abuse and exploitation of migrant agriculture workers," said the UFCW Canada national president. "Together, UFCW Canada and CNC will fight to make sure that the rights of Mexican migrant agriculture workers are protected, and that they get their fair share for their work, whether they own the land or not.”

UFCW Canada is the country’s largest private-sector union and has led the fight for the workplace and safety rights of migrant agriculture workers for more than two decades. In association with the Agriculture Workers Alliance (AWA), UFCW Canada operates ten AWA agriculture worker support centres across the Canada.