MAC: Mines and Communities

Long Term Strategy

Published by MAC on 2002-10-25

Long Term Strategy

While these elections have all been for the CTM leadership, the Alcoa workers voted to create an independent union and filed for the legal recognition necessary to gain the right to represent the workforce at Alcoa on April 30. That petition was denied at the end of August, but by the end of October, Mexican labor authorities will be considering an appeal.

Alcoa, Inc., is the world's largest producer of aluminum. Headquartered in New York and Pittsburgh, Alcoa has 129,000 employees in 38 countries. Former Mexican president Ernesto Zedillo was recently named to Alcoa's Board of Directors, while Paul O'Neill, Alcoa's CEO from 1987 to 2000, left the company to become secretary of the treasury under George W. Bush.

The Alcoa Fujikura Ltd. Division (AFL) is one of the five largest suppliers of automotive electrical distribution systems in the world. In Mexico, it manufactures wire harnesses for Ford, Volkswagen, Subaru, Harley-Davidson, and other firms. AFL's maquiladora operations in Piedras Negras and Ciudad Acuña employ more than 17,000 production workers.

The Alcoa workers have had support from the Comité Fronterizo de Obreras (CFO), an organization that works in six cities along the Mexico-U.S. border to promote union democracy and workers' rights. The Alcoa workers have asked for international support in their fight for a democratic union.

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