100,000 rally in Guayaquil Ecuador in launch of proposed labor laws

Posted on November 16, 2014 • Filed under: Ecuador, Labor Issues

Rally launchs federal government’s proposed reforms to labor laws.

telesurtv.net reported a massive rally, attended by a hundred thousand Ecuadoreans, was held in Guayaquil today to commemorate the 92nd anniversary of the 1922 massacre of workers where approximately 1,500 people were killed. The rally was organized by the federal government and also served as a launch of proposed reforms to Ecuador’s labor laws.

In November of 1922, the city of Guayaquil was paralyzed due to a general strike that had garnered the support of a large segment of the working class of Ecuador. On November 14, 1922 several trade union leaders were arrested. In response the trade unionists, accompanied by family and supporters rallied and marched to demand their release. The government of the day responded by ordering an attack on a peaceful rally in an attempt to break the back of the labor movement.

The labor law reforms will include at the very least 20 distinct items designed to enhance workers’ rights, particularly those of workers who have been historically excluded from protections under the law. Among the proposals is the elimination of fixed-term contracts and better protections for women who take maternity leave. The reforms also intend to give the Ministry of Labor greater powers to intervene in defense of workers’ interests.

The government of Correa successfully reduced child labor from 12 percent in 2006 to 2.6 percent in 2013 and Ecuador currently enjoys the region’s lowest unemployment rate at 3.9 percent.Read Article

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