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Joint Declaration

Ministerial Consultations Joint Declaration 

Between the Department of Labor of the United States of America and the Secretariat of Labor and Social Welfare of the United Mexican States Concerning

U.S. NAO Public Communications 9901 and 2000-01 

Mexican NAO Public Communication 9804


The Secretary of Labor of the United States of America, Elaine L. Chao, and the Secretary of Labor and Social Welfare of the United Mexican States, Carlos Abascal Carranza, in conformance with the provisions of the North American Agreement on Labor Cooperation (NAALC), decided to hold ministerial consultations on U.S. NAO public communications 9901 and 2000-01 and Mexican NAO public communication 9804. The Secretaries hereby decide to resolve the matters raised in the aforementioned public communications and, in doing so, reaffirm their commitment to effectively enforce labor laws in their respective countries, particularly those related to freedom of association and protection of the right to organize, the right to bargain collectively, minimum employment standards, prevention of occupational injuries and illnesses, compensation in cases of occupational injuries and illnesses, and protection of migrant workers, principles which are contained in their respective labor laws.

Desiring to strengthen labor relationships between our two nations and to create a new era of cooperation that results in increasing economic and labor opportunities in the 21st century; and 

Confirming our commitment to work collaboratively towards our shared objective under the NAALC to improve the working conditions and living standards of all workers;

The Department of Labor of the United States of America (DOL) and the Secretariat of Labor and Social Welfare of the United Mexican States (STPS) will undertake the following activities, which should contribute to a better understanding of labor laws and practices in both countries through information sharing, outreach, and exchange of best practices and technical expertise:

The exchange of information among labor officials of the United Mexican States and the United States of America regarding the different types of unions in each country (e.g. craft or guild unions, company-wide unions, sectoral or industry unions) and their relevant rights related to freedom of association and collective bargaining, in a public seminar to be held in Mexico.

The establishment of a bilateral working group of government experts on occupational safety and health issues, who are to be tasked with discussion and review of issues raised in the public communications, the formulation of technical recommendations for consideration by governments, the development and evaluation of technical cooperation projects on occupational safety and health for improving occupational safety and health in the workplace, and the identification of other occupational safety and health issues appropriate for bilateral collaboration. Cooperative activities may emphasize, among other things, best practices in the prevention of occupational injuries and illnesses specifically related to handling hazardous substances, labor-management cooperation mechanisms and ergonomics.

The development of informational materials by DOL addressing workplace rights of migrant workers in the United States. The materials such as brochures, pamphlets, and videos are to be produced in Spanish and are to be disseminated in areas of highest concentration of migrant workers in the United States. DOL and STPS will promote ongoing collaboration between the governments for the replication throughout the United States of model efforts to promote the protection of labor rights of migrant workers.

The Government of Canada will be invited to participate in the activities set out in this declaration.

Signed this __________ day of __________ , 2002. 

FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF
LABOR OF THE UNITED
STATES OF AMERICA:
FOR THE SECRETARIAT OF LABOR
AND SOCIAL WELFARE OF THE
UNITED MEXICAN STATES:
________________________
Elaine L. Chao
Secretary of Labor
United States of America
______________________
Carlos Abascal Carranza
Secretary of Labor and Social Welfare
United Mexican States