In March 2012, the AFL-CIO and twenty-six Honduran unions filed a submission under the labor chapter of the Dominican Republic-Central American-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) with the U.S. Department of Labor. The submission alleges that the Government of Honduras failed to effectively enforce its labor laws highlighting examples from seventeen worksites spanning the manufacturing, agriculture, and port sectors. The U.S. Department of Labor reviewed the allegations and, on February 27, 2015, issued a Public Report in response to the submission. In the Public Report, the U.S. Department of Labor raised serious concerns with regard to the protection of internationally recognized labor rights and enforcement of labor laws in Honduras. The Public Report recommended that the Government of the United States engage the Government of Honduras to develop a monitoring and action plan that would address the concerns identified in the Public Report.
To read the Public Report, please click here.
Accordingly, the two labor ministries developed the Labor Rights Monitoring and Action Plan (MAP), which was signed by U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez and Honduran Minister of Labor Carlos Madero on December 9, 2015. The MAP includes detailed commitments by Honduras to address legal and regulatory frameworks, undertake institutional improvements, intensify targeted enforcement, and improve transparency.
On March 14, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor released an assessment on progress under the MAP. The U.S. Department of Labor’s assessment stated that Honduras is implementing the MAP by taking steps to achieve each of the MAP’s objectives, including by finalizing a draft of a legal reform for labor inspections that will modernize the inspection system.
- Statement by U.S Trade Representative Michael Froman on U.S. Department of Labor Public Report regarding worker rights, February, 2015
- Press Release from U.S. Department of Labor on the Public Report regarding worker rights concerns, February, 2015
- USTR Blog, signing of the Labor Monitoring and Action Plan, December, 2015
- USTR Blog, Department of Labor released an assessment under the Labor and Monitoring and Action Plan, March, 2016