Machinists Union Exchanges Ideas with Brazilian Unionists

A delegation of 10 Brazilian unionists met with IAM members in Nashville, TN, as part of a labor exchange through the Solidarity Center.

The IAM recently strengthened its international ties by hosting a group of Brazilian unionists who were in the U.S. to learn more about American labor and manufacturing.

Click here to watch the new Machinists News Network video.

The group hailed from metalworkers’ unions that combine to represent thousands of workers at Embraer, a Brazilian aerospace manufacturer that has become a world leader in executive jets.

Starting their journey near Washington, DC, the group of 10 Brazilians heard from union leaders at IAM headquarters and attended classes at the William W. Winpisinger Education and Technology Center. Their 10-day trip also included trips to Wichita, KS, and Nashville, TN, to visit aerospace manufacturing plants and meet with members of IAM districts and locals.  

“I know our laws are stronger and protect people, even though in the South it’s not real union-friendly,” said Bill Benson, President of Local 735 in Nashville. “[Brazilians] have a whole lot harder struggle than we do.”

Brazil has been able to narrow its huge income inequality gap and bring millions into the country’s new middle class, but many remain left out. Labor laws have been largely untouched for decades.

The IAM sent a delegation to Brazil last October. Click here to read more about the trip.

Click here to watch “Brazilian Union Members Exchange Ideas with Machinists.”