Statement of Trade Representative Katherine Tai, Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh applaud successful first course of remediation under USMCA’s Rapid Response Mechanism
WASHINGTON – United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai and Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh today marked the successful conclusion of the first a course of remediation under the USMCA’s Rapid Response Labor Mechanism. Workers at a General Motors facility in Silao, Mexico voted on whether to approve their existing collective bargaining agreement in free and democratic conditions after the United States requested a review on May 12, 2021.
“The successful conclusion of this first-ever course of remediation under the USMCA’s rapid response mechanism shows that the Biden-Harris administration can deliver real, timely results to workers,” said Ambassador Tai. “The action taken by the United States and Mexico reflects our growing commitment to make trade work for workers. We will continue to collaborate closely with Mexico to strengthen the legitimization vote process and ensure workers in Mexico can access their rights to freedom of association and collective bargaining.”
“Workers in both the U.S. and Mexico will benefit from Mexico’s implementation of the course of remediation between the United States and the government of Mexico,” said Secretary Walsh. “This action demonstrates the Mexican government’s commitment to establishing a new model of labor relations based on greater union democracy and transparency. Working in partnership with the government of Mexico, we can apply the lessons learned in this case to ensure that workers are freely able to exercise their right to approve collective bargaining agreements in all future votes.”
Announced July 8, 2021, the course of remediation stemmed from a request for review submitted by the U.S. on May 12, 2021 under the Rapid Response Labor Mechanism concerning events preceding, during and surrounding an April 2021 vote by workers at GM’s Silao facility on whether to approve their collective bargaining agreement.
In line with the commitments in the course of remediation, a new legitimization vote occurred at the facility on Aug. 17 and 18, 2021, during which workers voted to reject their existing collective bargaining agreement. Federal inspectors from the Secretariat of Labor and Social Welfare oversaw the vote, while representatives of the International Labor Organization and Mexico's National Electoral Institute served as vote observers. The Secretariat has upheld the results of the vote. The current collective bargaining agreement at GM’s Silao facility ends on Nov. 3.