It is unrealistic to expect trade unions to refrain from political activity completely, but it is disingenuous for them to back their political preferences with union funds. Union dues should beused for work-related issues and wage negotiations. They ought not to advance political agendas.It does not matter whether some political parties are friendlier to union causes or not, their effect on collective bargaining is indirect at best. If workers are required to pay for trade unions involuntarily, then the least these institutions could do is to stick to their chief purpose. Finances are a sensitive issue that has caused discord among many social groups. Claiming to advance a certain cause and then taking on others is wrong. The issue of accountability and transparency is critical in running any public institution. Employees are often not sure how much their trade unions actually spend. They do not know whether their money is going towards useful activity or others that have little effect on them(Lum, 2014). Furthermore, in places like civil service, this lack of transparency is likely to be amplified. Most trade unions are in the public service where little transparency exists. Given this sort of climate, it only makes sense that workers be given a choice to support a body that advances their agenda or not. Apart from financial dishonesty, the Formula infringes upon workers’ right to not associate.While the formula states that workers can choose to become unionized or not, it does not guarantee that this right is protected. The Rand Formula abuses personal freedom, which is a key
SHOULD THE RAND FORMULA BE ABANDONED? 4 tenet in Canadian law. People have the right to pay for associations or not pay for them. Trade unions must not use backdoor clauses to mandate unionization. It is the right of every Canadian worker to decide whether they want to belong to a union or not and whether they want to pay the union. If there are concerns about protection of workers’ rights in exchange for their right to not associate then the United States can serve as a good example. In most parts of the US, there is nomandatory collection of dues or members in unions. Few states like Michigan only recently banned mandatory dues collections. The US’s workforce is doing well and their rights are properly defended (IAMAW Northwest District 250, 2018). Another counterargument against the freedom not to associate is the tax analogy. Some detractors may claim that employees are like taxpayers. If all citizens of the country had the freedom choose opt out of taxes, then most people would not pay them. Citizens need to be compelled to pay for certain services as long as they benefit from them(Doorey, 2013).