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David Foust Rodríguez, Luis Ignacio Román Morales, Miguel Ángel Álvarez Rodríguez

Significant implications of labor reform in Mexico for the economy and the furthering of enabling rights

For the past two years, the institutional framework of labor relations has undergone significant changes, particularly concerning labor rights. Some of the more relevant changes are implementing a policy to recover minimum wages, ratification of ILO Convention 98, and comprehensive labor reform. The approved bill establishes legal provisions to further the rights to freedom of association and collective bargaining, shifts the judicial process of labor rights from the executive to the judicial power, and provides social protection for agricultural day laborers and domestic workers. To which extent can this labor reform modify labor relations in Mexico? Will the workers be able to exercise their rights to freedom of association and collective bargaining without fear of reprisals? What are the main obstacles to implementing these reforms and policies, and how can government and other prominent stakeholders act to alter the status quo? To which extent does this labor reform fall short in terms of furthering enabling rights for workers? What are the main issues of the agenda for workers, employers, and the government? Based upon an analysis of the labor reform implications and the study of a recent labor movement in Matamoros, we present a theoretical discussion and an outline for further research. Our purpose is to contribute to the interdisciplinary analysis aiming for a more equitable society that gives spaces for social dialogue and the exercise of labor rights. Keywords: labor rights, labor reform, labor relations in Mexico.