Workers' Central Union of Cuba

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Confederación de Trabajadores de Cuba (emblem).jpg
Full name Central Union of Cuban Workers
Native name Central de Trabajadores de Cuba
Founded 1939
Members 3 million
Affiliation WFTU
Key people Ulises Guilarte, secretary general
Office location Havana, Cuba
Country Cuba

The Central Union of Cuban Workers (CTC) is the trade union centre in Cuba. It originated as the Confederación de Trabajadores de Cuba (Confederation of Cuban Workers) in 1939.

The original leaders of the organization were forced to flee after Castro's seizure of power in 1959.[1]

The CTC was founded after the second Congreso Obrero Latinoamericano, held from 23 to 28 January 1939 in Havana and the Constituent Congress of the Confederation of Cuban Workers. The Congress was attended by some 1500 delegates from 700 mass organizations. The Congress elected Lázaro Peña, a leading communist trade union activist, secretary general of the CTC. Peña was known for his outstanding career as a popular leader and for his honesty and value.

In the late 1940s, the government of Ramón Grau San Martín orchestrated a split of the CTC which forced out the communist leadership that had included sugar workers' union leader Jesús Menéndez and longshoremans' union leader Aracelio Iglesias, both murdered by suspected government agents. During the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista the CTC was led by Batista supporter Eusebio Mujal.

This situation changed radically with the victory Cuban revolution in 1959. Under the new communist government, Lázaro Peña returned from exile in Mexico to assume leadership of the new CTC. Later in 1961, it changed its name to the Central Union of Cuban Workers.

The CTC operates as a "mass organization" led by and directed by the ruling communist party. As such, there are no independent trade unions in Cuba and there is no right of workers to strike.

Throughout its history, the CTC always incorporated the vast majority of Cuban workers, making it the largest single national organization by membership, both before and after the Cuban Revolution.

See also[edit]


  • ICTUR et al.,, ed. (2005). Trade Unions of the World (6th ed.). London, UK: John Harper Publishing. ISBN 0-9543811-5-7. 

External links[edit]