Indigenous Female Farmworkers in Northern Mexico: Workers' Rights Violation Under the Veil of Better Jobs
This paper discusses the point of view of female indigenous farmworkers in terms of social inequalities and their effect on living conditions. It is based on research conducted over three years in an agricultural valley of the state of Baja California, regarding working conditions, workers’ rights and the health of indigenous women who work in the agricultural fields. Using qualitative methods, the objective of this research was to recover the voices of the farmworker women regarding the inequalities to which they are subject.
The instability and insecurity of their employment produces and guarantees a docile and inexpensive work force, thereby permitting companies to reduce the financial risk implied by the cost of guaranteeing work and benefits. This situation reflects the invisibility of these women in the eyes of the state, which leaves them in a condition of social vulnerability. The asymmetry of social relations explains how the state can offer low-quality services to this population and reduce their working and salary opportunities. The socioeconomic vulnerability in which this population is found is reflected in job insecurity and the inability to defend themselves against the state.