Update on Global Workers Justice Alliance

This NY-based public interest group advocates for the labor rights of immigrant workers. It focuses on building up the capacity of immigrant workers to protect their rights, for example for fair pay, even while back in their country of origin. The Alliance has worked in Mexico and other Central American countries.
Its recent news letter profiles one project involving immigrant workers who worked in planting pine trees in the South:
Partnering with the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), Global Workers and one of its Defenders in Guatemala ensured that hundreds of workers who planted pine trees in the southern US recovered wages stolen from their paychecks. After SPLC won a lawsuit for the failure to pay minimum wages (which is far less than the wage set by the government for guestworkers) the contractor continued to violate the law.
The contractor was charging exorbitant and unlawful fees to work in the United States, such as a fictitious $500 hotel “security deposit.” SPLC asked Global Workers to help them collect testimonies about these illegal charges from the guestworkers who had returned to Guatemala. According to the Director of SPLC’s Immigrant Justice Project our “amazing” help secured 50 testimonies and the court held the contractor in contempt ordering the workers to be reimbursed.