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Exploited Labor: News & Updates
January 16, 2018
The US Department of Labor issued a progress assessment calling on Colombia to more fully comply with obligations outlined in the U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement [of 2012], noting “lack [of] a national inspection strategy” and neglect of “associational rights of workers.” “Today’s update merely calls for continued consultation, monitoring, and assessment over the upcoming year – this is simply not good enough, given the depth of the problems and how long they have been festering. We need more proactive action and for this Administration to focus and engage with Congress to ensure all our trading partners have fair labor standards.” Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), member of the Colombia Monitoring Group of the House Ways & Means Subcommitte on Trade, US Congress
January 13, 2018
In the last year, 170 leaders and social activists known for their various missions in defense of indigenous rights, coca rights substitution, Afro-Colombian rights, labor rights, and LGBTQ. The majority of violence has erupted in sectors left vacant by the guerrilla groups, which have since been invaded by paramilitary groups. Of all of these, trade unions have risen to the top in the number of the nation's homicides and victims of violence and death threats, making Colombia the most dangerous nation for union members in the world. Over the last 20 years, about 3,000 unionists have been murdered with an outrageous rate of impunity at 87 percent, with thousands of death threats never being investigated.
September 24, 2017
assassination of union leader Tomás Francisco Ochoa Salazar, of the SITRABREMEN meat-packers union in Guatemala City, and shooting injury of union member Andy Noel Godinez
August 31, 2017
excessive force by police and ESMAD (anti-riot squad) against small-scale artisanal miners in Antioquia Department organizing in resistance to Canada-based Gran Colombia Gold Corporation; two killed by police gunfire: Brando Stid Ochoa, Alexis Gregorio Acevedo
July 15, 2017
killing of labor rights defender Eugenio López y López during a peaceful protest of former agricultural workers in Coatepeque, Quetzaltenango Department
June 15, 2017 to June 24, 2017
Travel with IRTF on a delegation to Colombia with Christian Peacemaker Teams(CPT)
March 24, 2017 to March 26, 2017
Join us March 26th for a powerful vigil at Wendy’s headquarters and a lively human rights parade in downtown Columbus!
September 22, 2016
Murder of peasant farmer leader Cecilia Coicue, age 62, in the village of Cominera, municipality of Corinto in Cauca Department.
August 25, 2016
The National Federation of Agricultural Workers Unions (Fensuagro), their affiliate and allies in the Department of Putumayo, are in imminent danger from the Colombian Armed Forces.