Vianey, a young mother and factory worker, was beaten brutally and repeatedly by her husband. She came to Casa de la Mujer for help, and found out that she has rights both at home and at work.

I have very bitter memories of my marriage. The only good thing that came out of it were my children, and I'll never regret having them. The factory where I work is important to me because it's how I'm supporting and advancing my children, my family... but the supervisors don't care about the workers, they think of you as a robot, they only care that you produce.

Vianey Diana

Diana is a vibrant young settler in one of Tijuana’s newest colonias, built around the Mattel plant. Like many of these neighborhoods, hers is poor and lacks basic infrastructural services:

This colonia is far from the city center. There's no pavement, no sewage lines, no running water. We only have electricity. When it rains, it's a mudbath, you go walking and your shoes stay behind, stuck in the mud. I have to walk pretty far to catch public transportation to take my daughter to school. When it's raining it's so difficult I prefer not to take her.

Living with the problems that arise from this lack of urban infrastructure, Diana promotes health and wellbeing in her community by volunteering at the local health clinic and by becoming a promotora. Inspired by her work at the local clinic and hoping to devote herself full-time to community organizing, Diana applies for and receives a scholarship to work in the Grupo Factor X office:

I don't let people take advantage of me anymore. I know that I can orient and help other women. I have three daughters, and I want to learn all I can, for myself and for them. But my husband doesn't like this change in me, he's jealous. It's sad for me, because he isn't supportive.

Vianey learns to fight for her right to bodily integrity and health at home and in the workplace. She marries a man who is a true partner for her, and they become a team, working together for a better future at home and at work.

I have changed because I met people who helped me. They taught me my rights. I began to feel more sure of myself, began to feel I was worth something. Now I can defend myself.

MAQUILAPOLIS traces these characters' stories as they develop over the course of 18 months. As the piece draws to a close, the characters reflect on the changes they have each gone through in confronting the difficulties of living on the leading edge of globalization.
fotos: daniel gorrell