OPSEU is engaged in solidarity work that extends well beyond our borders. In February we travelled with Cobourg’s Horizons of Friendship to look at development projects in Nicaragua. Our 9-part BLOG has been well received, and there is a possibility of an unexpected future development partnership arising from it. Meanwhile, after catching our breath, and with the help of OPSEU’s Anna Jover, we have edited some of our material into a short video that focuses mostly on our day in the Nicaraguan Maquilas — the free trade sweatshops. Seldom do activists get inside these factories — we were fortunate that this factory happened to have a good working relationship with the local garment union and the Horizon’s sponsored women’s organization, Maria Elena Cuadra. As such, it is considered a good employer compared to some of the other free trade factories despite its long shifts and $50 a week pay. As the general manager freely admitted on camera, he was only able to take his workers from “misery to poverty” and raised the necessity of an international minimum wage. Maybe the time has come. To watch our video, click on the box below.
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