Guatemala has the lowest unionization rate of any country in Latin America, and brave worker activists who struggle to form unions in this adverse context are in many cases illegally fired, threatened, attacked and murdered. In this context, the Solidarity Center offers technical expertise to local partners who are pushing for robust enforcement of labor laws and for an end to the rampant impunity for the widespread human rights abuses committed against unionists.
The Solidarity Center partners with national and local union bodies and rights activists to educate Guatemalan workers on their basic rights under domestic labor law and international labor standards, assist them in adjudicating labor rights violations, and help them improve their wages and working conditions through unionization campaigns. Our union allies in the agriculture, apparel and domestic work industries are developing the leadership capacity of traditionally marginalized workers, including women, indigenous and informal economy workers. We also work to develop public policy platforms that bring together all segments of Guatemala’s union movement to advocate reforms that benefit all workers.
In addition, as Guatemala is currently one of the principal departure countries for migrant workers seeking better livelihoods in the United States, the Solidarity Center works with the Regional Inter-Union Committee for the Defense of Migrant Worker Rights (CI Regional) on a national and Central America-wide level to promote the rights of migrants through multi-stakeholder social dialogue and policy advocacy.