Union leaders Monday accused the government of failing to implement a program that was supposed to protect the lives and rights of workers in the run-up to the free trade agreement with the United States.
During a news conference, some of Colombia’s biggest labour groups mentioned key parts of the 37-point Labour Action Plan (LAP), had either been ignored or never fully implemented.
The report comes as Colombia nonetheless faces critical anti-union violence. In 2013, 26 union members were killed and 13 more experienced attempts on their lives, the National Union School said. During the three years the LAP has been in effect, there have been 73 slayings of union workers and 953 death threats, the group said.
The United States and Colombia signed the LAP in 2011 as a way to woo U.S. congressional leaders who were withholding their support for the trade agreement over concerns about labor violence. A year after the action plan was inked, the trade deal, which had languished in Congress for six years, was finally ratified.