Labor & Workforce

Union workers at carmaker Audi in Mexico on strike over wage increase

Puebla, Mexico, Jan 24 (EFE).- Workers at the German carmaker Audi in Puebla, Mexico, went on strike for the first time on Wednesday over a disagreement on pay raises.

The Audi plant has been in Puebla for seven years, and this is the first time it has gone on strike.

The unions raised a red and a black flag at 11:00 am at the German carmaker considered Audi’s first premium plant in the Americas.

The company offered only a 6.5% increase, below the 15.5% demanded by the workers.

Some 1,300 workers from Audi’s first shift participated in the strike after failing to reach an agreement with the company.

There are 4,159 unionized workers, who support the Authentic Union of Workers of the Audi Mexico Company (SAUTAM) and the Independent Union of Audi Mexico Workers (SITAUDI).

“The workers are seeking a better income after being affected by annual inflation,” said César Orta Briones, president of SITAUDI.

The union leader said to the media that they are willing to return to work as soon as possible but they demand a wage agreement.

“Opinions are divided, but at the end of the day, we just want to sit down and negotiate, unfortunately, many weeks have been lost due to the company’s insistence on wanting to have a multi-year review, almost six weeks of dialogue have been lost,” he said.

Alan Montiel, a worker, told EFE that he supports the strike because he needs a better income to support his family in the face of inflation, which reached 4.66% in 2023.

“We support the strike. We are asking for what is fair for us as workers,” he said.

Gerardo Castilla, a worker at the carmaker, said he agreed to the strike because the percentage offered by the employers was unfair.

“We are not satisfied with the increase offered by the company. It is a small increase, considering the inflation rate. I hope for a higher increase,” he said.

The work stoppage represents the new labor panorama in the country after the reforms that allowed greater union democracy as part of the Mexico-United States-Canada Treaty (T-MEC), which has been in effect since 2020.EFE


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