The Porters

After decades of exploitative working conditions the porters organized in labor unions. Through the aid of a local politician, Daniel Estrada Perez, the Porter's Law was agreed to by the Peruvian government. This law guarantees them certain rights according to Peruvian laws and the ILO Convention 169, such as the right to a minimum wage, a maximum load of 20 kilos, food and proper equipment. 

La Federación Regional de Porteadores is a labor union with approximately 6000 members. Its purpose is the fulfillment of the Porters' Law. After some dissent with the former leadership a new one has been elected, with ambitious goals that would be inspiring to see realized. 

Contrary to the law, the porters often carry around 30 kilos at altitudes of over 4000 meters without insurance, adequate food, equipment and sleeping arrangements. Their salary rarely exceeds €22 for the four 20 hour shifts. Added to this are the injuries, deaths, empty promises of development projects, and much more. We repeat this information here to emphasize how much can be done simply by choosing an agency that complies with basic labor rights.   

 

Excerpt from Ley del Porteador No. 27607

Conditions of Work

1. Provision of food, and appropriate clothing and equipment for spending the night.

2. Payment of transport up to the point of departure of the expedition, to the end of the trip, unless this is covered under a separate agreement.

3. Life insurance.

4. Limit of load of 20 kilograms. With regards to women, the maximum load will be reduced to the limits which the regulation fixes.

5. Appropriate rest and sleep during the trip.