Brakes, Thugs and Ballots: Inside Tridonex Historic Vote to Defeat Sham Mexican Unions Using USMCA

By: Daniel Rangel, Rethink Trade Research Director
In December 2018, progressive Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador raised the minimum wage by 16%. Along the northern border with the United States, the minimum daily wage was doubled to restore the purchasing power of the country’s lowest earners. Corporations in Matamoros refused to adjust factory workers’ wages accordingly, as required by existing collective contracts. This generated widespread anger and discomfort among the working class or ‘la raza’ as you say in Tamaulipas.
For those of you who understand Spanish, this is a video worth watching. Susana Prieto, the lawyer that supported workers’ struggle to defend their rights from the beginning of the 20/32 movement in early 2019, was imprisoned and accused of bogus criminal charges in retaliation for her activism and leadership. After being released, under ignominious conditions such as not going back to Tamaulipas for three years, she ran for the Mexican congress and is now a diputada in the lower chamber of Mexico’s legislative body. Quite a story in my opinion — no wonder her excitement with the news.
Here’s SITPME’s chief Jesus Mendoza Reyes complaining about the vote and, as one labor friend said, looking like a character brought to life from a “Saturday Night Fever” meets “The Godfather” rerun.
For all the talent SNITIS members have organizing and fighting for workers’ rights, photographing skills could be improved. Alas, this is the best picture I have to share of this historic day, but at least I got one where you can see the sign of the company.