Membership - Young Members Committee: Why You Should Vote YES for the Progressive Dues

June 17, 2016

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We are pleased to announce our unanimous support of the proposed option for the progressive dues structure. The proposed option would change CAPE’s dues structure from the current flat fees structure to a flat percentage of membership salaries. We urge all CAPE members to vote YES to this important policy proposal for two reasons.

First, the proposed option of a 0.75% flat rate of monthly salary would make the membership dues more equitable. It would ensure that membership dues reflect the differences in income levels. This is similar to the values Canadians already uphold in our progressive income tax system. This would ensure we all contribute a fair share of our salaries toward the common interest. The percentage of salary CAPE members would pay in dues under the proposed option would remain one of the lowest in the Public Service. Similar progressive dues structures are already being implemented in some other Public Service unions whose members pay anywhere from 1.25% to 2.16% of their salaries, including the Professional Association of Foreign Service Officers (PAFSO), the Association of Justice Counsel (AJC), and the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC).  

Second, the proposed option would help the Association beat inflationary pressures by indexing membership dues with salaries. The cost of running a successful organization that can effectively fight for your salaries, rights and benefits is subject to inflationary pressures like any other goods and services in the broader economy. The current fixed fees dues structure does not automatically adjust for inflationary pressures thus making the revenues of the Association more precarious and uncertain. The current approach would also necessitate more frequent calls to raise dues on an ad hoc basis with more administrative burdens and costs to the union.

While this initiative originally started from CAPE’s Young Members Committee, we realized that it has become a broader issue of values that go much further beyond our constituency or any generational differences. In the course of promoting the progressive dues structure, we have encountered many supporters across different Departments and Agencies of the Public Service at different levels who share our belief that dues should be progressive to income. We want to thank all of our supporters but also express our appreciation to those members who may disagree with our ideas but stand committed to respectful debates and open dialogue.

We hope you would join us in promoting an open and constructive dialogue of our union, and in the upcoming vote, we urge you to vote YES to the proposed option for the progressive dues structure.


The Young Members Committee
Canadian Association of Professional Employees