A labor union is an organization of workers who collectively negotiate the terms of their employment and improve working conditions.
The goal of a union is to create a formal mechanism to protect and advocate for workers' needs and interests. Articles in this section break down what a union does, how to form one, and the whys and hows of the help they can bring to workers in both the short and long term.
- The union difference: advantages of having a labor union - Whe unions work well, they better the lives of their members. When a union is won, they guarantee a legal right to bargain with your boss; have historically brought about better wages, benefits, and protections; center support and care for you and your coworkers when managerial decisions get made; and mean the next generation of workers have a chance at better standards. Read more in the “The union difference: advantages of having a labor union”.
- Unionize your workplace in 5 steps - No single article can cover the entirety of the process, but for a bird’s eye view, there are five steps to unionizing: 1.) research, 2.) build a united front, 3.) collect authorization signatures, 4.) win recognition, 5.) contract negotiations. Read more in “Unionize your workplace in 5 steps”.
- How to talk to your coworkers about unionizing - Talking to your coworkers about unionizing is one of the most challenging steps in the early process. Identify someone you trust, make sure you listen to their perspective more than you speak, and talk them through what a union can do to help tackle some of the challenges they face. While it may take multiple chats to win their support, you can read more about how to get the conversation started in “How to talk to your coworkers about unionizing”.
- What’s an organizing committee? Why should I form one? - Organizing Committees (OC) are made up of a group of workers who collaborate to move a union campaign forward with the goal of winning a union election or voluntary recognition. They facilitate collective action to build a more just and equitable workplace. Wondering who should be on it? Read about OCs “What’s an organizing committee? Why should I form one?”
- Privacy FAQ for workers forming unions - While private sector workers with W2s have a legal right to organize, you may still have concerns about privacy and employer retaliation. That’s reasonable! We’ve compiled some answers to commonly asked questions organizers have at the outset of unionizing. Read more in “Privacy FAQ for workers forming unions”.