May 26 and 27, 2017 at the Palacio de Minería, Calle Tacuba 5
in the Historic Centre of Mexico City
“We call on social movements, trade unions, farmers, indigenous nations, migrants, environmentalists, human rights groups and all other interested sectors/organizations from Mexico, United States and Canada to come together to strengthen trinational work in the face of the ‘re-negotiation’ of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), an agreement that has been negative for the peoples of the three countries.
In the 23 years since NAFTA was implemented we have witnessed an unprecedented increase in profits and rights of multinational corporations, which has contributed to widening economic inequality in North America. The social, economic, and environmental impacts on working class people have been devastating, including increased poverty, exacerbating climate change, weakened labour rights and precarious employment, environmental protections eroded, and a downward spiral in terms of living standards across North America.
The NAFTA re-negotiations will have serious impacts on workers, the rights of indigenous peoples, small-scale farmers and peasants, the environment, migrant workers and many other sectors as officials from the three countries get set to negotiate behind closed doors without allowing for meaningful public consultation. Instead, we need a fundamentally new and different model of trade that prioritizes the development needs of all peoples, the protection of our planet, and the reduction of asymmetries among the three countries and within those same nations.
Networks from all three countries representing labour unions, farmers, indigenous peoples, environmentalists, human rights groups, faith based and other organizations that have been collaborating since the inception of NAFTA are issuing this call to build a broader and more diverse movement to challenge the neoliberal re-negotiation of NAFTA.
Mexican organizations, working together under the umbrella of ‘Mexico Better Off Without FTAs’ invite you to join in convening a trinational popular sector gathering to be held in Mexico City on May 26 and 27, 2017. On May 25, some organizations will hold sectoral trinational meetings specific to labour, agriculture, migrant workers and other key areas, so consider your travel plans accordingly.
This gathering gives us all an opportunity to strategize around actions needed to build collective power based on the principles of solidarity and internationalism while sharing alternatives to the dominant neoliberal agenda.
Details about the agenda and logistics will follow. Participants must self-fund travel expenses and if possible should help organizations unable to afford travel costs. We are looking into financial support for food, lodgings and translation during the gathering.
Please let us know if you plan to attend, and if your organization would like to join us as a co-convener and/or to participate in the event.
No more corporate-led trade agreements!”
Initial conveners include:
Canada: Common Frontiers (CF); Council of Canadians; Trade Justice Network (TJN); Réseau québéquois sur l’intégration continentale (RQIC); Alternatives; Association pour la Taxation des Transactions financières pour l’Aide aux Citoyens (ATTAC-Québec); Centre international de solidarité ouvrière (CISO); Centrale des syndicats démocratiques (CSD); Centrale des syndicats du Québec; Confédération des syndicats nationaux (CSN); Conseil central du Montréal-Métropolitain (CSN); Fédération nationale des travailleurs et des travailleuses du Québec (FTQ); Génération nationale; Syndicat de professionnelles et professionnels du gouvernement du Québec (SPGQ)
Mexico: Convergencia de Organizaciones Sociales y Ciudadanxs “México mejor sin TLC’s”, Unión Nacional de Trabajadores (UNT), Nueva Central de Trabajadores (NCT), Asociación Nacional de Empresas Comercializadoras de Productores del Campo (ANEC), Centro de Derechos Humanos “Fray Francisco de Vitoria OP”, Red Mexicana de Acción Frente al Libre Comercio (RMALC), Red en Defensa de los Derechos Digitales R3D, Campaña Nacional Sin Maíz no hay País, Movimiento “El campo es de todos”, Consejo Nacional de Organismos Rurales y Pesqueros (CONORP), Consejo de Ejidos y Comunidades Opositores a la presa La Parota (CECOP)
United States: Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, Institute for Policy Studies Global Economy Project, National Family Farm Coalition, Public Citizen, Sierra Club, Food & Water Watch
*Canada Raul Burbano, Common Frontiers Canada , email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Ronald Cameron, Réseau québécois sur l’intégration continentale, email@example.com
* United States: Karen Hansen-Kuhn, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, firstname.lastname@example.org
* Mexico: José Olvera: Sindicato de Trabajadores de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (STUNAM) email@example.com; Alberto Arroyo (RMALC) firstname.lastname@example.org; Víctor Suárez (ANEC) email@example.com