News Forage - Hundreds of workers at the Lexmark plant in Juarez have been fired after they walked off the job last week, asking for raises, the right to unionize as well as other demands. According to the Spanish-language website sinembargo, the labor dispute started back in early November, after workers asked for a raise of six pesos, or roughly .34 cents a day.
Lexmark, an international company producing printer cartridges, now pays workers a maximum of 70.10 pesos per day, or $4.03 daily. Workers were looking for an increase of between 114 to 120 pesos (almost $7 dollars a day) as is the norm for employees with five or more years with the company.
When the increase was denied, workers decided to file for formation of a union; a move employees say triggered the firings. In response, some 700 workers held a work stoppage on December 8th, prompting the wave of firings. Now those fired workers have camped out in front of the plant until their demands are met. In addition to the firings, the workers say their annual bonus – one mandated by the Mexican Government – is also being withheld. Lexmark employee Miriam Delgado – who worked at the plant for 37 years – was let go, along with scores of her fellow employees. “I was fired Wednesday….HR told me my contract was terminated because I violated the code of conduct of the maquila, and (to) please leave the plant…”