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11
April
2012

PKC responds to criticism on worker rights in Mexico

PKC Group have denied allegations that they restricted the rights of employees in Acuna, Mexico – claiming they acted to defend workers rights in the region.
“In response to recent shareholder and media attention in Finland, PKC Group states that it has not, and is in
no way restricting the rights of its employees in Mexico nor anywhere else in the world, including their rights
of association,” said a statement released by the company today.

The statement follows claims that PKC, who purchased AEES companies in August 2011, denied workers rights to be represented by the Miners Union, instead signing an agreement with the allegedly pro buisness CTM union.

The company claims instead that it is fully complying with “Mexican laws and norms” and that workers freely chose not to be associated with the miners union.

“There have been a number of efforts by different groups (including the Miners Union) to unionize the plants and employees working in Acuna, Mexico, over the last several years. The employees have consistently demonstrated their desire not to join such unions,” the statement reads.

PKC Group said that the company signed with the CTM on September 2011, “(i)n order to protect the rights of its employees”. The company claims that they purchased the company just as the Miners union was intensifing its campaign in Acuna.

Under Mexican law, unions can register as the employees’ representative irrespective of the will of the employees. “Registration and certification of the union as the bargaining representatives binds the employees to pay membership dues to the labor union whether they wish to join it or not,” the company said.

“The effort to unionize the employees is being driven by external individuals and groups – not by the employees. Exercising the legal right to accept a contract with the CTM was seen as means to fulfill employees’ will not to be represented by a union that they did not want”.
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