Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis today met with Colombia Minister of Labor Rafael Pardo to discuss Colombia's recent achievements in protecting workers' rights and to address the challenges that remain. She highlighted the ongoing technical cooperation between the U.S. Department of Labor and Colombia's Labor Ministry, and announced the award of a $2 million grant to the International Labour Organization to develop a robust presence in Colombia.
"Minister Pardo and his leadership team share our commitment to worker rights and strong and effective labor law enforcement," said Secretary Solis. "The grant from the U.S. Department of Labor announced today is but one effort to help ensure that Colombia has all the tools it needs to carry out this commitment."
The ILO presence will support the implementation of the Colombia Action Plan Related to Labor Rights through a variety of direct assistance activities. In April 2011, the plan was concluded between Colombia and the United States. Under it, Colombia committed to a series of measures to improve protection of labor rights, prevent labor violence and increase prosecution of the perpetrators of such violence.
These commitments lay the groundwork for significant labor rights improvements in Colombia. To date, Colombia has met each milestone in the action plan. Solis acknowledged that much work remains to achieve the full potential of the plan for Colombia's workers and reaffirmed her full commitment to work with Minister Pardo to overcome challenges.