USW Disappointed in USMCA Panel Decision on San Martín Mine

For Immediate Release: May 13, 2024
Ben Davis,, 412-562-2501

PITTSBURGH – The United Steelworkers union (USW) issued the following statement in response to the rapid response mechanism panel decision, issued under the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), in the case of the San Martín mine, owned by Grupo Mexico:

“The United Steelworkers is disappointed by the panel decision.

“While we appreciate the work of the panel, specifically its ruling that the mine is a Covered Facility under the USMCA rapid response labor mechanism, the fact remains that the strike launched in 2007 by our sister union, the National Union of Mine, Metal, Steel and Related Workers of the Mexican Republic (Los Mineros), has not been resolved. 

“Mexico’s highest court ruled nearly three years ago that the strike by Los Mineros is legal, yet Grupo Mexico continues to operate the mine with replacement workers, excluding the members of Los Mineros from the workplace. 

“The failure to find a denial of rights at the company sends a message that the rights of corporations outweigh those of workers. That is simply unacceptable.

“We are also concerned by the publication of the Mexican Economy Secretariat’s announcement on social media, prior to its official release, and by the statements to the news media by a member of the panel, prior to the decision being made public. 

“Such actions threaten to undermine the integrity of the Rapid Response mechanism. We hope that Mexico will take appropriate corrective actions.

“There are many outstanding questions that need to be assessed in the coming days, the first of which is the views of Los Mineros, who, we believe, have yet to see the decision. It is their members whose interests are at issue, and we stand in solidarity with them. An additional question is the impact of the decision as it does not have precedential value under the USMCA.

“The fight for workers’ rights, including those at issue in this case, is far from over and we will examine what further actions are necessary and appropriate.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers employed in metals, mining, pulp and paper, rubber, chemicals, glass, auto supply and the energy-producing industries, along with a growing number of workers in health care, public sector, higher education, tech and service occupations.



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