Death threats, arrest warrants against Mexican workers, lawyers protesting their employer

In the Mexican state of Coahuila, workers struck this week to protest unfairly low profit-sharing payments. Their leaders received death threats, the government issued arrest warrants for the workers' attorneys, and the state police raided the home of one of the attorneys (see photo.) President Gerard sent a letter to the Governor protesting these actions. You can read the text of the letter below, or click here to download a printable version.  

May 13, 2018House raided

Miguel Ángel Riquelme Solís
Governor of Coahuila
Palacio de Gobierno, 1er. Piso, Juárez y Zaragoza s/n, Zona Centro 25000 Saltillo, Coah., México

Dear Governor Riquelme,

The United Steelworkers are alarmed by reports that workers at Fasemex in Castaños and Real Alloy in Frontera who protested the profit-sharing payments announced this week have received death threats.

We are also very concerned that arrest warrants were issued for the workers’ attorneys - Cristian Ponce Ramírez, Jesús Ponce, Juan Iribarren Camacho, and Luis Alberto Iribarren-, and that state police raided the home of Cristian Ponce and caused extensive damage.

Our union represents 850,000 workers in Canada and the United States including employees of Real Alloy. We along with the rest of the labor movement in our countries have insisted that any new NAFTA guarantee the right of workers in all three countries to organize without fear of repression.

We demand that your government withdraw the arrest warrants for the workers’ attorneys and compensate Mr. Ponce for the damage to his home, investigate and prosecute the persons who have threatened the workers of Real Alloy and Fasemex, and ensure that they receive all of the profit sharing payments to which they are entitled with no further retaliation or retribution.

Very truly yours,

Leo W. Gerard

USW International President 


Press Inquiries

Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Wayne Ranick at 412-562-2444

USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor Jim McKay

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

Mailing Address

United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222