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Carol Pier, labor rights and trade researcher for the Business and Human Rights Program of Human Rights Watch, researched and wrote the report. Arvind Ganesan, director of the Business and Human Rights Program, Joanne Mariner, deputy director of the Americas Division, and Joseph Saunders, deputy program director, edited the report. Wilder Tayler, legal and policy director, performed legal review. Elizabeth Wang also provided invaluable legal review and advice. Ximena Casas and Marijke Conklin, Americas Division associates, Megan Doherty, intern, and Alison Hughes, Business and Human Rights Program associate, provided research assistance. Fitzroy Hepkins, Andrea Holley, and Veronica Matushaj provided production assistance.

Human Rights Watch is grateful to the many advocates, lawyers, activists, academics, and business and industry representatives who shared their knowledge, experience, expertise, and perspectives with us. We also wish to express our appreciation to the current and former Salvadoran Labor Ministry officials, labor court judges, and representatives from the government’s Human Rights Ombudsman’s Office who provided valuable information regarding El Salvador’s labor laws and their application and enforcement. Finally, this report would not have been possible without the cooperation and assistance of the workers, union organizers, and fired and active trade union leaders who shared their stories with us.

The Business and Human Rights Program gratefully acknowledges the generous support of the Sigrid Rausing Trust and the General Service Foundation.

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December 2003