MEXICO CITY, Feb. 21, 2014 /CNW/ - Migrant workers rights organizations
have presented a request for a Thematic Hearing at the 150 regular
session of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR). The
hearing is being called to highlight the responsibility of states of
origin in the violation of temporary workers' labour rights,
specifically during the process of selection, recruitment, hiring,
monitoring and return, when traveling to the U.S. or Canada on
temporary work visas.
Through the hearing, migrant worker advocates aim to highlight the
responsibilities of states of origin in Mexico, Guatemala and El
Salvador during these processes.
The United States, alone, has provided more than 50,000 visas (H-2A) per
year for temporary work, most occupied by Mexican people. This demand
for temporary foreign labour has created a loophole exploited by false
recruiters, who claim to provide jobs in the U.S. and Canada by
offering so-called visas to cross the border "legally". But, in
reality, these promises are often just money scams that result in
workers and their families losing everything, and sometimes putting
their personal safety in jeopardy by indebting themselves to loan
Making matters worse, workers also experience rights violations while in
More than 90 percent of Mexican nationals who have gone to the U.S. with
an H-2A visa have reported labour violations, while 30 percent of these
workers don't know who recruited them, or even who they work for.
In Guatemala, 2,568 H-2B visas were issued in 2012. However, the
country's biggest problem has been the confiscation of land titles by
In El Salvador, 825 people have participated in the Temporary Workers
Program, mostly in Canada. Despite its small number, El Salvador
doesn't track its citizens when they're working abroad, thus failing in
its obligation to protect them.
Also under Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program between Canada and
Mexico, migrant workers have been denied their right to association
with the complicity of the Mexican government, whose interference was
documented before labour tribunals in Canada.
The application for the IACHR hearing, filed under "vulnerability
situation of labour rights of temporary migrants generated from their
countries of origin", is the result of coordinated efforts of United
Food and Commercial Workers Canada (UFCW Canada) Agriculture Workers Alliance (AWA), Global Workers Justice Alliance
(Global Workers), Instituto de Estudios y Divulgación sobre Migración
A.C. (INEDIM), Instituto de Estudios de la Mujer Norma Virginia Guirola
de Herrera (CEMUJER), Proyecto Binacional Jornaleros Safe, Respuesta
Alternativa, A.C., Red Regional de Organizaciones Civiles para las
Migraciones (RROCM) capítulo El Salvador conformadas por la Asociación
Salvadoreña de Educación Financiera (ASEFIN), Grupo de Monitoreo
Independiente de El Salvador (GMIES), Iglesia Anglicana Episcopal,
Instituto Salvadoreño del Migrante (INSAMI), la Red Internacional
Scalabrini para las Migraciones (SIMN) and Soleterre. The Commission
has the power to publicize and promote the observance and defense of
human rights, including those of persons in the context of human
mobility. These rights are enshrined in the American Declaration of the
Rights and Duties of Man and the American Convention on Human Rights.
If accepted, this hearing could lead to specific recommendations to
prevent and stop current violations of temporary migrant workers'
SOURCE: United Food and Commercial Workers Canada
For further information:
For more information, contact by country:
El Salvador: email@example.com