Info on Maquilas

TRW Workers Nov 12 2009

TRW Workers intercept the Border Cities’ Summit, deliver their demands directly to the Governor, and announce their solidarity with the Electrical Workers Union (SME)


Write a letters to TRW’s executives supporting the workers
Write a letter to President Obama demanding NAFTA Free Trade be addressed

On November 12th the TRW Workers Coalition hijacked the Border Cities’ Summit, which was held in Reynosa, Tamaulipas. The workers learned that the governor of Tamaulipas, Eugenio Hernandez, would be attending the event, so they arrived early at the Holiday Inn Hotel, before security guards cordoned off the area.

The mayors of Tamaulipas’ cities were surprised by the courage of the workers, who stood up to the police and security guards and approached the Governor of Tamaulipas. The Governor’s Secretary told them to put down their signs and wait for the Governor to come to them; but the workers went directly to the podium and asked the Governor to hear what the TRW Workers Coalition had to say.

Please see the following link:

The TRW Workers Coalition gave the Governor a letter asserting that they are not troublemakers; instead, they are workers some of whom have 20 years seniority at TRW. But now, the TRW corporation is violating their right to jobs, to freedom of association and to collective bargaining by relocating them to a warehouse without adequate security and transportation and by refusing to recognize the workers’ coalition and deal with them.

Please see the following link:“Ge_o”_ser_reinstalados_en_TRW.html

The workers demanded that TRW negotiate the relocation directly with them or pay them severance including back pay, in keeping with Mexican labor law. They recommended to the Governor that corporations be required to provide a deposit to local government to begin operations in a city, in order to guarantee that corporations not behave with impunity, without accountability to workers and without paying what the law requires. The workers demanded that the Governor investigate TRW’s practice of blacklisting the workers who formed the TRW Workers’ Coalition.

Please see the following link:

Agüita protesta Cumbre Fronteriza

The letter ended by stating that TRW and the CTM union have informed the workers that TRW’s actions have the support of the three levels of government. The letter asks, if that is true, then the government is failing in its obligation to defend the rights of the people. The workers asked the Governor to intervene in order to reach a prompt and fair solution to the conflict.

The Governor told the workers that he will study their letter and respond. During this exchange, the Mayor of Reynosa appeared to be very angry at the failure of the security guards to block the workers’ access to the Governor.

Three TRW workers, Delfino, Antonio and Leonardo, accompanied the Governor to his bus. The exchange was covered widely by the media.

Earlier, on November 11th, workers from the TRW Workers Coali tion took over the Labor Board again, demanding that its President set a date for the evidentiary hearing in the case. The date was set for December 7th. TRW Workers also made a statement to the media that they would join the call by the Electrical Workers’ Union (SME) to turn off the lights in their homes for two hours, in a show of solidarity with the SME struggle.

Please see the following link:


1. Please write a letter to TRW’s CEO in Michigan headquarters, demanding that TRW be accountable to the workers and negotiate directly with the Workers Coalition instead of the charro corporate CTM union

2. Please keep sending messages to President Obama demanding that NAFTA be renegotiated

3. Send a tax-deductible contribution to the Coalition for Justice in the Maquiladoras: Coalition for Justice in the Maquiladoras, 3611 Golden Tee LN, Missouri City, TX 77459

SAMPLE TRW headquarters message to send to:

John C. Plant, President and Chief Executive Officer TRW Automotive. Phone: 734.855.2600. Email:

Neil Marchuk Exec. VP for Human Resources. Phone: 734.855.3871 (office) 734.748.0676 (cell) 734.855.2473 (fax) Email:

John Wilkerson, Senior Communication Manager. Phone: 734 855 3864. Email:

Please send copy of your letters to CJM at:,

Subj: Continued concern about TRW operations in Reynosa, Mexico
To: "" , "" , ""

John C. Plant, President and Chief Executive Officer TRW

Dear Mr. Plant:

I am writing to express my continued concern about TRW’s operations in Reynosa, Mexico. I learned that yesterday the workers met the Governor of Tamaulipas and asked him to investigate TRW’s actions in Reynosa. I am sure that you understand by now that the CTM “official” union does not adequately represent the workers and has repeatedly failed to stand up for their rights.

No corporation wants to be known as an entity that condones violations of labor rights and labor law. It is in TRW's interests to respect workers’ rights to safe jobs, freedom of association and collective bargaining. I urge you to take action now to guarantee that TRW reinstate workers who were fired unjustifiably from their jobs at the TRW Del Norte Industrial Park plant and respect all severance and seniority payments as required by Mexican labor law.

I call on you to guarantee respect for workers rights and to take immediate action to address these concerns about TRW operations at the Reynosa plant. I request that you keep me informed of the steps you are taking to address this extremely serious situation.


SAMPLE MESSAGE to President Obama: Phone: 202-456-111, 202-456-1414, Fax 202 456-2461


Please send copy of your letters to CJM at:,

Subject: NAFTA fails to protect workers’ rights

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President,

The NAFTA trade agreement has failed to meet the expectations of economic growth and development. Instead, NAFTA has increased unemployment, economic instability and insecurity, poverty and environmental injustice in the three countries of North America.

Multinational corporations such as TRW, a US corporation based in Livonia, Michigan, have profited by exploiting cheap labor, thanks to free trade agreements. After many years of phenomenal earnings, corporations are now laying off workers. In the case of TRW in Mexico, they are laying off workers without the severance payments that the workers are owed by law.

Trade agreements are about much more than trade. Trade agreements must have mechanisms to address and resolve the social consequences they create.

Despite the economic crisis, now is the right time to renegotiate NAFTA and address the need for immigration reform, which is inextricably linked to NAFTA.

The evidence of NAFTA's failure is everywhere - people are suffering the real consequences of unregulated and irresponsible free trade policies.

I call on you to investigate and regulate multinational corporations such as TRW, which is violating workers' rights and operating with impunity in Mexico.

I also urge you to uphold your commitment to address immigration reform and renegotiate the NAFTA trade agreement immediately.



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