CHICAGO – In 2006, an explosion at the Pasta de Conchos coal mine, in Coahuila, Mexico left 65 miners dead. Most of their bodies remain trapped to this day in the worst mine disaster in recent times in Mexico. Every year unions around the world rally to remember the fallen miners of Coahuila, and to demand that the Mexican government help the families reclaim their buried loved-ones.
Steelworkers led a rally including union members, along with faith-based, community and occupy activists last Saturday, Feb. 25, in solidarity with the Mexican miners.
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The group rallied at the Mexican Consulate in Chicago. In addition to demanding closure for the families of the miners killed in Pasta de Conchos, they also protested the Mexican government’s attacks on unions in Mexico. These attacks included federal troops killing two striking miners in 2006, imprisonment of labor leaders without charges, and the freezing of union funds.
The United Steelworkers (USW) has developed a special solidarity relationship with the Mexican miners union, known as Los Mineros, This has included not only solidarity with the struggles of Los Mineros against government attacks on striking miners, but also help from Los Mineros in dealing with Mexican owned companies operating in the US.
Photo: Scott Marshall/PW