Unions have long served as the protective barrier for employees against excessive demands and abusive practices by management. While these organizations have been aggressively advancing the rights of workers for decades, there are still many people that are not well informed about these organizations. As a result, they may have some important questions that they want answered before they decide whether or not to join these bodies.
Aren't Unions Only For Factory Workers?
There is an extremely common notion that labor organizations are primarily suited for those working in factories and other manual labor professions. While it is true that this is largely where unions got their start, workers in a wide range of fields can benefit from the services and protections offered by a strong union.
For example, unions have rapidly grown into offices and other white collar professions. While these individuals usually make more than manual laborers, they can still be subjected to excessive and unfair working conditions by management. Without the protection of a union, these individuals would have no recourse for improving their working condition other than asking management, and given the strong interest in management to drive profitability and productivity, there is little reason to believe they would acquiesce to these requests.
How Do Unions Protect Employees?
When workers unionize, the employer will enter into a contractual agreement with the union. This contract will detail the various policies that will apply to the workers, and there is often an emphasis placed on pay, hiring, firing and promotions. Unfortunately, there may be times when the employer violates these contracts, and this can cause severe hardship for the workers.
If it turns out that your rights according to the contract were violated, the union will usually take legal action against the employer to rectify the wrong. This can include monetary compensation to the worker and reinstatement to their position. Also, there may be times when you are involved in legal disputes that stem from your responsibilities, and when these cases arise, the union will furnish you with expert legal counsel to help defend you.
Joining a union can be an excellent way of ensuring that your rights as a worker are preserved, but these organizations are very misunderstood by most people. Understanding that workers in a wide range of fields can benefit from unionization and the benefits that you can enjoy from these organizations will help you make a better understand whether this is a good option for your career and situation. Contact professionals, such as those from Canadian Office & Professional Employees Union Local 378 campaigns, for further assistance.