Cut to the Judiciary: what it consists of and why workers initiated a nationwide strike

A million-dollar cut to the Judiciary has unleashed the mobilization of workers nationwide. The measure extinguishes 13 of the 14 trusts of the governing body, and unionized employees responded with a work stoppage, road blockades and the call to wear white in protest starting on October 16. This Monday, traffic blockades and road chaos occurred in at least eight points in Mexico City as a result of the demonstrations. Throughout the day, workers from different states joined the demands.

What does the cut to the trusts of the Judicial Branch consist of?

Last week, Morena’s parliamentary faction and its allies in Congress approved in committees a cut of 15.45 billion pesos to extinguish 13 of the 14 existing trusts in the Supreme Court, the Judicial Council and the Electoral Court. The project has been signed by Ignacio Mier Velazco, coordinator of Morena in the Chamber of Deputies, and points out that some of the trusts were created to pay bonuses, benefits and pensions for judges, as well as support for gasoline and unlimited toll services on highways. for ministers.

The initiative indicates that resources are not managed with transparency towards the public and are only distributed among senior managers. “It is absolutely intolerable that there are privileged economic benefits that so negatively distinguish a very small group of officials from the rest of the people who work in the Judiciary itself, not to mention the rest of the population,” the document states.

The resources obtained after the cut would be allocated to social programs and infrastructure works through the Federation Treasury. In addition, it promises to respect contractual commitments in the case of trusts related to the payment of pensions and other labor benefits, however, resources originating from contributions from federal budget resources would be returned to the Federation Treasury.

Members of the Union of Workers of the Judicial Branch of the Federation demonstrate in Oaxaca, on October 12.
Members of the Union of Workers of the Judicial Branch of the Federation demonstrate in Oaxaca, on October 12.Carolina Jiménez Mariscal (Cuartoscuro)

What actions will the workers of the Judicial Branch take?

After the extinction of 13 of the 14 trusts, the Union of Workers of the Judicial Branch of the Federation (STPJF) called for a series of demonstrations in the capital of the country and different states, as they point out that the measure violates their labor rights. Tamaulipas, Veracruz, Jalisco, Sonora, Zacatecas, Tabasco, Baja California Sur, Yucatán, Morelos, Guanajuato, Chiapas, Oaxaca and the State of Mexico joined the protests over the elimination of trusts, as reported The universal.

In a video published on the official YouTube channel of the STPJF, the general secretary, Sergio González Pimentel, announced a mobilization for Tuesday, October 17 in response to the budget cut.

“We have agreed to call on all those who are governed by the general working conditions of the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation and the Council of the Federal Judiciary in order to demonstrate at the national level on Tuesday the 17th starting at 8:00 a.m. time of each state, prior to entering to carry out our daily activities outside the buildings where we work,” he points out in the recording.

In another video, González Pimentel explained that to the grievances over the cut are added the “constant disqualifications” by President López Obrador, and assures that his words do not correspond to the effort that the workers make “in favor of the administration of justice that guarantees the rule of law.”

In his conference on October 12, López Obrador reiterated that eliminating trusts from the Judicial Branch will not harm workers and that the resources could be allocated to social programs. “I don’t think it affects anything. That trust that is in question is practically not used, it is a reserve that they have there to maintain privileges of high public officials. There is very little that is exercised, it accumulates more and more and there you have it, it is a little treasure. […] These are privileges, they are not going to be left without salaries, without their basic benefits, no court is going to be closed, no one is going to be fired,” said the president.

The College of Secretaries and Actuaries of the Federal Judiciary AC and the Union of Workers of the Judicial Branch of the Federation (PJF) have joined the union’s mobilizations in order to create a common front, as they stated in a statement. In addition, they prepare a protest in the Chamber of Deputies on October 24, the day the Open Parliament for the 2024 budget begins.

Other actions planned by the union include placing banners with slogans in the buildings of the Supreme Court of Justice and the Federal Judiciary Council throughout the country, demonstrations outside the buildings and wearing white daily starting Monday. October 16.

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