Mexican Workers Want Independent Union at Nike/Reebok Contractor
After staging a walkout in January to protest five firings, workers at the Kuk Dong International Factory at Atlixco in the Mexican state of Puebla are trying to create an independent union. The factory produces apparel for Nike, Reebok, and many U.S. colleges and universities.
On March 18 the workers elected leaders and adopted the name SITEKIM, or the Independent Union of Workers at the Kukdong Company International of Mexico. This is the first step in becoming a recognized union under Mexican law.
The meeting was attended by observers from the United Students Against Sweatshops and the Comité de Apoyo al Trabajador. Workers face continued hostility towards the idea of an independent union, primarily from the state-affiliated FROC-CROC union.
The January walkout sparked an international solidarity campaign. International pressure on Nike to intervene resulted in Nike Vice President Dusty Kidd sending a letter asking the company to reinstate the five workers with their previous seniority.
However, conditions within the plant are still hostile toward the independent union. SITEKIM is asking the international community for support.
Contact Dusty Kidd, Global Director for Labor Practices, Nike Corp., One Bowerman Drive, Beaverton, OR 97003. Call 503/671-6453 or fax 503/532-0400. Also contact Hoon Park, General Manager, Kukdong International Mexico, Retorno de los Continentes No. 38, Col. Rancho los Soles, C.P. 74210, Atlixco, Puebla, Mexico. Phone 011-52-2-446-1020-3 or fax 011-52-2-446-1024.
Also contact the government of Puebla and ask that the process to grant legal recognition be expedited fairly: Government of the State of Puebla, C. Melquiades Morales Flores, Governor. Fill out the form at