Brazil’s Recent Labor Law Reform: What Does It Mean for Brazilian Workers and Their Unions?


Thursday, February 8, 2018, 12:00pm to 2:00pm


CGIS South, S050, 1730 Cambridge Street

SpeakerStanley A. Gacek, Senior Advisor for Global Strategies, United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW)

This presentation will assess the drastic effects of the latest Brazilian labor law reform on workers and their unions, and also will discuss how the Brazilian labor movement might respond to these challenges. Gacek will provide a context for the Brazilian labor relations system, mention some of its contrasts with the U.S. system, and underscore the importance of Brazil for U.S. workers, as well as for students and professors of comparative labor movements.

stanley_gacekStanley A. Gacek is a U.S. labor lawyer and has been serving as Senior Advisor for Global Strategies at the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) since September of 2016. The UFCW represents 1.3 million working women and men in the retail, wholesale, food production and allied industries. He serves as his Union’s focal point on international relations. From 2011 to 2016, he served as Officer in Charge/Interim Director and Deputy Director for the International Labor Organization (ILO) mission in Brazil. Prior to his assignment with the ILO in Brazil, he held the following positions: International Relations Officer in the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of International Labor Affairs from 2010 to 2011: Special Counsel for International Labor Law at the Solidarity Center/AFL-CIO and Associate Director of the AFL-CIO’s International Department, 2006 to 2010; Assistant Director, Responsible for the Americas, AFL-CIO International Affairs Department, 1997 to 2005; UFCW Assistant Director for International Affairs, 1984 to 1997; and UFCW Assistant General Counsel, 1979 to 1984. Gacek received his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1978 and his B.A. in Social Studies from Harvard College in 1974. He has been a member of the District of Columbia Bar since 1979 and was admitted as a life member to the Council on Foreign Relations in 2009. He was a visiting instructor at Harvard University in the Spring Semester of 2008, co-teaching Sociology 191 – “The Politics of Labor, Law and Globalization in the Americas” with Assistant Professor Tamara Kay. He is an expert on labor and politics in Brazil, having closely followed developments in the country since 1981. He is the author of a comparative study on Brazilian and U.S. labor law systems, entitled, Sistemas de Relacoes de Trabalho – Exame dos Modelos Brasil-Estados Unidos, Editora LTr, Sao Paulo, 1994. This book was updated in co-authorship with Professor Ana Virginia Moreira Gomes of the University of Fortaleza Law School, and was republished by Editora LTr in 2015. Gacek received the Order of Merit for Labor Justice from Chief Justice Ives Gandra of the Brazilian Superior Labor Court (TST) on November 16, 2016, in recognition of his contribution on behalf of international labor standards in Brazil.