Programs || Labor Rights

Labor Rights

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Did you know that more than a million women that work in the textile and artisan manufacturing industry receive 5.7 pesos by the hour, in comparison to the 10 pesos by the hour that the males receive as a salary for the same job?*

Hence, Semillas supports local organizations that defend and promote the rights of working women in assembly factories (maquilas) and domestic work.

The following organizations are funded by Semillas to aid domestic workers, and in the maquila industry, to overcome the difficulties they encounter when trying to achieve dignified labor conditions.

*Data from: CIMACNoticias. “Pierden derechos laborales más de un millón de costureras informales” en:, enero, 2005.

Centro de Apoyo y Cap. para Empleadas del Hogar, AC (CACEH) – Distrito Federal

alt The Center for Support and Training of Domestic Workers

Throughout 15 years the Center for Support and Training of Domestic Workers has given domestic workers accompaniment, legal guidance, and training in order to familiarize them with their labor rights and aid them in their defense, always aiming towards improving labor conditions. With the project titled, Building alliances in favor of domestic workers’ rights, CACEH celebrates its 15th anniversary in the struggle for advancing women workers’ labor rights. Through a documentary video the organization will collect testimonies of various women who have been protagonists in the defense of their rights as domestic workers. This video also recognizes and evidences the organization and its members’ trajectory.

Colectiva Rosa Luxemburgo, AC – Chihuahua

Rose Luxemburgo Collective

Ciudad Juárez is the second city in the country with the highest number of maquilas (factories) and 51% of the workforce they use is feminine. However, the growth of the maquila industry has not led to improvements in women’s labor conditions, on the contrary, the number of cases of abuse and exploitation is increasing. Through the project titled Citizen Observatory of labor rights and women’s labor rights, the Collective, based in that city, will consolidate itself as a civil organization and document cases; thus allowing them to have an influence on policies in favor of women’s labor rights.

Colectivo Ollin Calli. Baja California

Ollin Calli Collective alt

Based in Tijuana, the organization is made up of labor rights defenders, in most cases ex-maquila workers from the border. Female workers are at a great disadvantage when they try to defend their rights: their lack of knowledge regarding their own rights, labor exploitation, gender violence, and a general fear of filing complaints, are only some of the obstacles they face. With the project titled Working women empowering other working women, the collective drives strategies focused on disseminating information on labor rights among five municipalities along the border of Baja California, they will offer legal guidance and training in labor rights, labor health, and sexual harassment for women workers.

Colectivo Raíz de Aguascalientes, AC – Aguascalientes

alt The Root Collective

Day by day, female maquila workers in Aguascalientes are confronting constant labor rights violations. The lack of information needed to act collectively leads them to accept indignant working conditions. The Root Collective aims to contribute to the empowerment of a group of female maquila workers who are going through a conflict with the company they work in. Through training and guidance, these women will be able to recognize their rights, organize, and defend themselves in order to obtain better working conditions.

Joven Es Yucatán AC (JEYAC) –Yucatán

Youth is Yucatan (JEYAC)

With the project Dissemination and training on labor rights and rights of working migrants in communities of Yucatan, the organization Youth is Yucatan works in the municipalities of Emiliano Zapata, Xul, and Yaxachen in order to promote migrant worker’s labor rights. In these areas men work as day laborers in the fields, packaging plants, or maquilas where they are exploited and discriminated, while others migrate to the United States. Due to their partners’ migration, women have begun to work in maquilas and packaging pants more often, since they are unaware of their rights, they are oftentimes victims of sexual harassment, exploitation, and constant abuse. The organization disseminates information regarding labor rights on local radio stations, as well as through plays and informative materials distributed in packaging plants, maquilas, health centers, and some public spaces.

Red de Mujeres Empleadas del Hogar AC – Guerrero

alt Network of Female Domestic Workers

This organization was formed in 2006 and aims to raise awareness among indigenous female domestic workers regarding their labor rights. From their base in Chilpancingo, they serve as mediators for more than 7,000 domestic workers in the Lower Central-Mountainous region of Guerrero. The project titled Integration of the regional team of municipal facilitators/promotors in Chilpanzingo, Tixtla, Mártir de Cuilapan and Chilapa de Álvarez will help domestic workers’ rights become more visible, tend to and file complaints, as well as follow up cases related to discrimination, abuse, labor and gender violence female domestic workers experience in the state.

Red de Mujeres Sindicalistas – Distrito Federal

alt Women’s Union Network

According to data from the INEGI the total amount of working women in the country is 19 million, out of which 11 million work informally. This situation inhibits their ability to exercise their labor rights, such as access to health, day care, pension, and decent housing. Through the project titled The right to decent work for women in order to achieve progress for female workers, the Women’s Union Network promotes respect for female maquila workers’ rights in Oaxaca. Through training in labor rights, these women will be able to recognize their rights and together build a road towards their defense.


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