Mexico City Recognizes the Rights of Informal Waste Pickers


On July 15th 2016, Mexico City’s Human Rights Commission (CDHDF) issued Recommendation 7/2016, named “Omissions in Mexico City’s urban solid waste collection, separation and final disposal, and in the creation of decent work conditions for those who undertake these activities.”

It recognizes that the right of informal waste pickers to decent work is violated, and it is the first official document to place on record the discrimination, exploitation and abuse they suffer.

Overall, Recommendation 7/2016 constitutes an innovative pronouncement when it talks about the shortcomings of the city’s waste management public service in general, and their impact in the right to a safe environment and quality of life for the people that live or move through Mexico City. It also recognizes the work informal workers do as necessary to ensure those rights.

The Commission declares that “The government of Mexico City is neglecting its obligation to respect, protect and guarantee decent work for volunteer workers and informal waste pickers who are part of the free labour force that is essential to the proper operation of the municipal sanitation service in Mexico City.”

Read more in this resource document.

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