A coalition of Canadian unions and community organizations, including CUPE, have sent Mexican President Felipe Calderón a letter dated November 10, 2009. The letter condemns the liquidation of the Luz y Fuerza del Centro power company and the brutal layoff of its 44,000 workers.
As a matter of fact, on Wednesday November 12, the mexican capital was paralyzed by a day of action to protest this scandal: “Six marches all made their way towards the centre of Mexico City, five universities were on strike and four highways were blocked,” according to the French daily paper Le Monde.
CUPE took part in an online action in mid-October to mobilize support for the Mexican workers.
Excerpts from the letter:
The signatories make the following demands to the Mexican government:
- “Without any delay withdraw the liquidation decree and order the reopening of the public company Central Light and Power as well as the immediate withdrawal of the Federal Police and the army from its installations.”
- “Guarantee the return of the workers who are members of the SME to their work places respecting their collective agreement which we consider to continue to be legally binding.”
The letter was written in Montreal on November 6, 2009 at a followup meeting to the Third North American Encounter of Organizations from the Energy Sector held in Mexico City from March 16 to 18, 2009. The 23 signatories represent a dozen organizations and unions, including CUPE 1500, CEP the CLC, the United Steelworkers the COPE, the Council of Canadians, the RQIC, and Common Frontiers Canada.
- “We condemn the actions of your government on October 10th and 11th when you ordered the takeover by force through the intervention of federal police of the installations of the Central Light and Power Company (Luz y Fuerza del Centro), in order to later issue a decree announcing the liquidation of that company which is protected by the Constitution and without the necessary Congressional authorization.”
- “We condemn your government’s decree liquidating the collective agreement and the very existence of the Mexican Electrical Workers Union (Sindicato Mexicano de Electricistas (SME)) as well as the dismissal without due process nor previous approval by a judicial authority of more than 44,000 workers leaving them unemployed and putting at risk more than 15,000 pensioners.”
- “We denounce how the unilateral action of your government creates the conditions for joining the installations and assets of Central Light and Power with those of the Federal Electricity Commission (Comisión Federal de Electricidad) in order to hand over the entire industry to the private sector.”