The return of union dues is criticized

Note published on October 26 in Reforma, Negocios [Business] Section by Verónica Gascón.


In the midst of an economic crisis and high inflation, workers could take another hit to their pockets.

The Senate approved the mandatory deduction of union dues from workers’ salaries, which quashes the right that workers had since May 1 of 2019 of deciding whether they authorized this measure.

Additionally, it is a measure that goes against the principles of union freedom, and which will be beneficial to emerging unions that need resources, experts pointed out.

The bill was turned over to the House of Representatives.

Diego García Saucedo, labor lawyer, stated that it is a way of retracting legislatively and that it responds to political interests.

“The truth is that many centrals, unions that do not belong to the old guard and are more aligned with the new Administration have also gained power. The way things stood, the worker decided whether union dues were to be deducted; now that there are more unions from different factions, the union fee deduction will be applied to the workers that decide to join, as it was done before”, he said.

Óscar de la Vega, a lawyer at the De la Vega & Martínez Law Firm, explained that the amendment would be a contradiction.

“It is a contradiction, because the entire labor reform, the USMCA, the international conventions, talk about freedom of association and, with this, they are defending the return to a union corporativism.

“In the year of 2019 the decision that it was optional for the worker whether or not to pay union dues was inserted”, the specialist said.

He added that there is another element that relates to the exclusionary clause for admission, which is still in force; that is, the clause that says that if a worker does not join a union he cannot be hired by a company.

“We should annul the exclusionary clause for admission and admit the candidate that is best prepared for the job and once the worker has been hired, he can decide whether he will become affiliated to the union or not, this is freedom of association”, De la Vega pointed out,

He reiterated that it is a “nostalgia” of corporate unions, who have no certainty that the worker will become affiliated to the union freely.

He added that even the most modern unions must make an attractive offer so that workers become affiliated.

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