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CHICAGO LABOR: As Holiday Season Arrives, Azteca Strike Enters 13th Week

Boycott Azteca Products!
On September 30, 63 workers with UE Local 1159 went on strike at Azteca Foods, a tortilla factory on Chicago's southwest side, to protest the company's unfair labor practices. For years, they'd been represented by a corrupt company union that threatened workers and protected the company. Three years ago, Azteca workers -- almost all are Spanish speaking Mexican immigrants -- began their struggle for a real union to represent their interests -- and on April 12, by a vote of almost 3 to 1, they won an NLRB election to form a union with the United Electrical Workers (UE).

The workers have been in contract negotiations with the company since May 14. In spite of appeals from religious and community leaders to negotiate fairly, millionaire Azteca owner Arthur Velasquez continues to demand concessions from the employees. Those concessions include lockout rights, cuts in medical and maternity leaves, the eradication of seniority rights, increased use of minimum wage temporary workers who have no benefits, a ban on union newsletters on company premises, and more.

On October 28, striking workers launched a boycott of Azteca Tortilla products. Since then, solidarity has grown as union and community groups across the country rally in support. Still, the company continues to stonewall, and the next negotiating session will not be held till January 8th. Despite the bitter cold on the picket line and the hardships of the strike, worker and community solidarity remains strong.

Read More - Boycott Azteca Tortillas website | Recent Developments | Background
Solidarity - How you can help | Donate online this holiday season for Azteca workers.





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