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Is Violence Against Union Members in Colombia Systematic and Targeted?

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  • Daniel Mejía

    ()

  • María José Uribe

    ()

Abstract

Violence against union members in Colombia has been at the center of a debate for several years now. Union leaders and NGOs in Colombia and abroad continuously argue that free trade agreements with Colombia should be blocked based on the failure of the current Colombian government to protect union members from targeted killings. We first look at the evolution over time of the indicators for violence against union members and union leaders. In particular we show (using different indicators and data sources) that violence against unionists in Colombia has shown a significant decline over the last seven years. Then, we use available panel data to study the determinants of violence against union members and union leaders. We make special emphasis on testing the claim that a greater intensity in the characteristic activities of unions (such as strikes, wage negotiations, etc.) leads to more violence against union members and union leaders. Using different data sets, data sources and estimation methods, we find no statistical evidence supporting this claim. These results suggest that, on average, violence against unionists in Colombia is neither systematic nor targeted.

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File URL: http://www.brookings.edu/press/Journals/2011/economiafall2011.aspx
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION in its journal JOURNAL OF LACEA ECONOMIA.

Volume (Year): (2011)
Issue (Month): ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:col:000425:009147

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Keywords: Violence Targeted Killings Unions Union Activity Colombia;

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  1. Rafael Di Tella & Sebastian Galiani & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2006. "Crime Distribution and Victim Behavior during a Crime Wave," CEDLAS, Working Papers 0044, CEDLAS, Universidad Nacional de La Plata.
  2. Steven D. Levitt, 1999. "The changing relationship between income and crime victimization," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sep, pages 87-98.
  3. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters, in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Gaviria, Alejandro & Pages, Carmen, 2002. "Patterns of crime victimization in Latin American cities," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 181-203, February.
  5. Isaac Ehrlich, 1996. "Crime, Punishment, and the Market for Offenses," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 43-67, Winter.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. 8 atributos para buenas economistas
    by Francisco Mejía in Hacia el desarrollo efectivo on 2012-07-11 19:40:55
  2. Development that Works: 8 qualities of good economists
    by Francisco Mejía in Eval Central on 2012-07-11 11:45:40

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