Unions in El Salvador Stage ‘Black March’ Protest

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Salvadorian Protest Over Pension Reform

Hundreds of unionists, workers and social organizations demonstrated this Friday against a recently approved pension reform. The group marched to the Presidential House in San Salvador to deliver a new proposal to modify six articles of the Comprehensive Law of the Pension System, but were blocked by agents of the Unit for the Maintenance of Order of the Police.

The protesters underlined that the reforms “will not allow a dignified pension” and will only benefit private pension administrators. The reforms, approved at the end of December 2022 by the Salvadoran Congress, retained the management of resources in charge of the Pension Fund Administrators (AFPs) and increased the contribution of employees and employers alike, raising the former’s to 16%. This 1% increase for companies guarantees them a commission for administration of resources.

Central American Institute for Fiscal Studies (ICEFI) highlighted the “unsustainability” of the law, as only 1 out of 4 people with a paid job contributes to the pension system and 8 out of 10 older adults have no access to a pension.

Despite the protests, the proposed reforms successfuly reached the headquarters of the Presidency when a commission managed to deliver the written proposal. The groups of demonstrators hope that their message has been heard and their proposal honoured.

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