Help Us Cover Autoworkers Fighting Back in Bolsonaro’s Stronghold

Mike Elk interviews workers outside of a Trox plant in Curitiba, Brasil (Paulo Passini)

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This week, I will be traveling in Curitiba, Paraná, a stronghold of Bolsonaro support. In the state of Paraná, people voted for Bolsonaro 55% to 36%.  Paraná is famous for being the region where Lula was imprisoned in 2018 on corruption charges, of which he was later exonerated. (The prosecutor Sergio Moro, who took on Lula, is now a frontrunner for Paraná’s governor and also a Bolsonaro supporter.)

Earlier today, I was out with Metalworkers union SMC talking to workers in Curitiba, Brasil, entering a Trox air conditioning plant here at 6 am as it rained. While Bolsonaro has a lot of support, unions are working overtime to make sure that their members know about some of Bolsonaro’s anti-union policies.

In 2017, while covering the Nissan union drive in Canton, Mississippi, I met a group of Nissan workers from Paraná, who traveled every year for a decade to Canton, Mississippi, to show solidarity with the nearly two-decades-long struggle to unionize Nissan there. 

These Nissan workers will be guiding me around and showing me how they are fighting hard for Lula. 

Donate today to help Payday cover our costs for the trip to Curitiba. 

Thanks again for all the support.

Love & Solidarity,


About the Author

Mike Elk
Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered everything from Lula & the Brazilian labor movement to major league baseball. He spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian and was labeled by the New York Times as an "abrasive gadfly" for exposing within the labor movement. Raised in a UE union family in Pittsburgh, Elk was illegally for union organizing at Politico in 2015 and used his NLRB settlement to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh and is fluent in both Pittsburghese and Portuguese, which he learned when attending journalism school at PUC-Rio de Janerio. Email: [email protected]

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