The Constitutional Court adjudicated that the fourth Clause of Article 81 of the Trade Union and Labor Relations Adjustment Act(TULRAA) which prohibits employers from giving financial supports to the trade union's operation costs is unconstitutional. A 7-2 decision of the en banc of the Constitutional Court was made in favor of the Korean Metal Workers Union(KMWU). KMWU requested a judicial judgement to the Constitutional Court in March 2012, when the union received a correction order issued by the Ministry of Employment and Labor on the collective agreements with seven companies in 2010, citing the reason that "the collective agreements violated the TULRAA."
The collective agreements concerned have content that "The company bears the maintenance fee of the trade union office." While recognizing that "The clause to prohibit employers from giving financial support to the union's operation costs is to secure the trade union's independence from employers and ultimately to guarantee the practical implementation of basic labor rights," the Constitutional Court nevertheless ruled that "In a case that financial support to the union's operation costs by employers does not impose any risk of interference on the union's independence, such a prohibition at any rate does not help accomplish the purpose of the legislation that is to secure the independence of trade unions."
reported by Yang Ou-ram
translated by Kim Sung-jin
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