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U.N. Special Report: U.S. Workers Restricted in Exercising Basic Union Rights

U.N. Special Report: U.S. Workers Restricted in Exercising Basic Union Rights

A new report finds that the United States fails to uphold the most basic rights of workers, particularly in the South, where some states "support or collude with employers to infringe upon workers’ rights to peaceful assembly and association." The report cited examples such as Tennessee officials’ opposition to unionization at a Volkswagen plant and the "government of Mississippi [which] touts the lack of unionization as a great benefit when courting potential employers."

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AFL-CIO Supports Suspension of All U.S. Funding for Honduran Security Forces

Photo courtesy SOA Watch on Flickr

The AFL-CIO supports the Berta Cáceres Human Rights in Honduras Act, which would suspend all funding to Honduran security forces. These forces have engaged in well-documented cases of excessive use of deadly force, abuse of power and entrenched corruption. Just this week, another indigenous activist, Yaneth Urquia Urquia, was kidnapped and murdered. The AFL-CIO calls for a suspension of funding from the U.S. Congress and loans from multilateral development banks until abuses by security forces stop and those responsible are prosecuted.

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Trade or Human Rights? Integrity of State Department Trafficking Report Still an Open Question

Trade or Human Rights? Integrity of State Department Trafficking Report Still an Open Question

The State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons report is a powerful tool to hold governments accountable for their failures to prevent human trafficking. The report ranks governments worldwide into one of three tiers based on their efforts to combat and prevent trafficking and forced labor, with the lowest ranking of tier three carrying economic sanctions. The release of the 2016 report has been met with mixed reviews from labor and anti-trafficking groups.

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In the Wake of Deadly Clashes, AFL-CIO Stands with Mexican Teachers Union

At least eight protesters were killed and 53 injured earlier this week in clashes with police in Oaxaca, Mexico, during demonstrations against neoliberal education reforms. The teachers union in Oaxaca has been leading protests this summer against the federal government’s move to impose a national education plan that blankets over indigenous concerns in Oaxaca and imposes teacher evaluations that disadvantage schools in the poor region, as well as attacks against the union, including the controversial arrests of union leaders, mass firings of protesting teachers and the freezing of union bank accounts.

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South Korean Trade Union Leaders and Members Face Harsh Jail Sentences for Peaceful Demonstrations

South Korean Trade Union Leaders and Members Face Harsh Jail Sentences for Peaceful Demonstrations

Union leaders and members have been at the forefront of the fight for social justice in South Korea, organizing and participating in peaceful demonstrations throughout 2015, including protests against the weakening of worker protections. Disturbingly, the South Korean government has increasingly responded to dissent with police brutality, mass arrests and harsh jail sentences targeted at leaders.

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Workers at Global Labor Meeting Protest the Removal of Brazil's Democratically Elected President

Workers at Global Labor Meeting Protest the Removal of Brazil's Democratically Elected President

Workers from many countries this week made clear they reject the process in Brazil to remove democratically elected president Dilma Rousseff. Workers from around the world unite every June at the annual International Labor Conference in Geneva, Switzerland, to debate with governments and employers and defend workers' rights. While this year's meetings have focused on improving wages and conditions in global supply chains, worker delegations took the opportunity to make their opinions known when the interim government of Brazil's minister of labor began to address the plenary on Wednesday.

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Black Trade Unionists Call on Obama to Condemn Coup and Support Brazil’s Democratically Elected Government

Black Trade Unionists Call on Obama to Condemn Coup and Support Brazil’s Democratically Elected Government

On May 29, the 45th annual convention of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists voted unanimously to support democracy and denounce what activists around the world are calling a legislative coup in Brazil. President Dilma Rouseff, re-elected by 54 million Brazilians in 2014, was leading the fourth consecutive Workers’ Party government, whose policies had lifted more than 40 million people out of poverty in the majority black nation, the largest black country outside of Africa.

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AFL-CIO Stands with Brazilian Workers and Democracy

Photo courtesy Wikipedia

Over the last few months, right-wing forces in Brazil have seized the opening created by a failing economy and corruption investigations involving all political parties to suspend a democratically elected president. The politicians leading the effort to remove the president are implicated in multimillion-dollar scandals. Ironically, there are no corruption or other criminal charges against the president, Dilma Rousseff.

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