Members of the National Union of Journalists voted to censure union's National Executive Committee over its response to the financial crisis at the weekend.
The motion was carried at the union's Delegate Meeting in Newcastle which also opted to increase membership fees by 5 per cent and to reduce the frequency of delegate meetings from every 18 months to two years in order to save money.
NUJ honorary treasurer Anita Halpin said: "The two significant factors which have had the most impact on our financial situation are constant. The double whammy of the dire state of the industry and the funding of our staff pension scheme."
A further motion calling for an investigation into former NUJ general secretary Jeremy Dear's £45,000 severance payment was defeated.
Pete Murray, who was president at the time of Jeremy Dear's departure, said said: "The money was not a gift, nor a bung or pay off, it was part of his contractual entitlement. Not to report it to the NEC was a mistake, an oversight. I messed up badly for not doing that and I apologise."