Mayo 2009


Rio de Janiero, Brazil, May 6, 2009

On the third day of the GAATW Conference, the group of about 50 participants were broken up into two groups: Access to Justice and Recognizing Rights. Global Workers participated in the Access to Justice group where the day began with summarizing some of the specific regional challenges to accessing justice. The goal of this session was to discuss novel strategies from advocates from around the world that would help trafficking victims greater access to the judicial system. Two panelists discussed specific cases and the specific challenges in those cases to accessing justice.

Huehuetenango, Guatemala May 20, 2009

Cathleen Caron, Executive Director, traveled to Guatemala to strengthen ties with the current Defenders, meet with potential Defenders, and advance other issues related to our work with Guatemalan migrant laborers in the United States.

Huehuetenango, Guatemala May 21, 2009

Over four days in Huehuetenango, Cathleen spent considerable time with Aroldo Palacios, one of our strongest partners. Aroldo formerly directed the legal department for the Catholic Church’s social ministry office in Huehuetenango before striking out on his own several years ago. He now runs a general practice and continues to address serious human rights violations that plague this country.

Huehuetenango, Guatemala May 22, 2009

During our discussions, on how to strengthen our work in the defense of transnational workers, Cathleen and Aroldo explored the idea of more legal actions in Guatemala to stop some of the abuses of workers before they even leave to work in the United States. Oftentimes, US courts simply cannot address the range of abuses suffered. For example, workers recruited by the subcontractor Express Forestry (who were sued by SPLC for a range of labor rights abuses—see blog entries from Nov. 2007 for more) once again extracted large fees from workers recruited to return to the US in 2009.

Guatemala, Guatemala May 27, 2009

While at a conference on migration in Canada in November 2008 (see blog entry from October 26, 2008 for more), the Canadian union, UFCW (, asked Global Workers to support a case of a Guatemalan migrant who worked for four years in a row with the temporary worker program in Canada. In June 2006, he witnessed a Canadian farmer beat a Mexican co-worker with a metal pole. After suffering repeated abuse over the four years the workers had enough and went to the union to denounce the events.

Guatemala, Guatemala May 28, 2009

Cathleen also met with US consular officials to discuss ongoing initiatives. She was disappointed to learn that the ground-breaking efforts achieved under the previous General Consul were halted as soon as he finished his post in Guatemala. As previously described (see November 2007 blog entries), the consulate began alerting US employers as to their obligations under Guatemalan labor law (laws which prevent human trafficking) and providing Know Your Rights information (based on our model) to H-2 workers bound for the United States.

Guatemala, Guatemala May 29, 2009

Over the week Cathleen also met with more Defenders and other institutions. Cathleen spent time with Defenders Claudia Gonzalez and Waldemar Barrera to discuss ongoing cases and build their capacity to work with U.S advocates. Several Defenders floated the idea of starting an NGO dedicated to the labor rights of migrant workers—no such NGO currently exists in Guatemala. These are exactly the types of initiatives that Global Workers hope will arise from our work.


"Tribunal canadiense ordena a empresa indemnizar a trabajadoras mexicanas" (fuente: La Jornada)

COMUNICADO DE PRENSA: Guatemala, Guatemala - Hoy Global Workers Justice Alliance, la Pastoral de Movilidad Humana de la Conferencia Episcopal de Guatemala y La Oficina de Derechos Humanos del Arzobispado de Guatemala hacer saber al publico nacional e internacional de la apropiación irregular de títulos de propiedad por parte de reclutadores de trabajadores migrantes temporales, con el informe "Confiscación de Títulos de Propiedad en Guatemala por parte de reclutadores en Programas de Trabajadores Temporales con Visas H-2B". Sigue el enlace para acceder el comunicado completo:

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