John Samuelsen was named International President of the Transport Workers Union of America (TWU). At the time of his appointment, Mr. Samuelsen served as Executive Vice President and President of TWU’s largest affiliate, Local 100, in New York City. He will continue to serve as Local 100’s President through the implementation of a recently negotiated agreement with New York City Transit, covering 38,000 members.      

“Protection contracts,” in which companies negotiate with unions that do not legitimately represent workers, have caused automotive sector wages to stagnate in Mexico during recent years, despite large-scale investments by auto makers. While such agreements are illegal in the United States and Europe, they are commonplace in Mexico. University of California, Berkeley Labor Professor Harley Shaiken argues that Mexico’s protection contracts are one of the reasons that carmakers have shifted production to the country, as the agreements keep labor costs artificially low.