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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Mexico: Solidarity across borders

Sweatshop workers in Mexico share their stories with ELCA youth

Guadalupe Grisel Ávila, 21, left home to work at Rubie’s Costume Co. in Tepeji del Río, an industrial town in Mexico. She had hoped to earn a better living and study for a teaching job. Instead, she found terrible factory conditions.

“We had to buy our own water and toilet paper from the plant’s store,” she said. “There were several times when the cafeteria food made us vomit because it’s made in unsanitary conditions and full of bugs.”

Ávila, seven co-workers, a union leader and a representative of the AFL-CIO Solidarity Center shared their experiences July 4 with 24 ELCA youth visiting the Lutheran Center in Mexico City. They ate together, played basketball and talked a long time.


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