What are trade unions?
A trade union is a membership based organisation. One of a trade union’s main aims is to protect and advance the interests of its members in the workplace. Most trade unions are independent of any employer and its main aims are to assist with negotiations and issues.
Why should I join?
1. Pay - Unions negotiate your pay, pensions and other terms and conditions like holidays.
2. Legal Advice – Unions can offer legal advice and services. They also offer personal injury schemes and 24 hour legal helplines on non work matters.
3. Personal representation - Help can range from your elected representative providing reassurance or full blown representation if a problem gets serious.
4. Health and safety – local Health and Safety representatives have rights to help protect your health and safety at work. They can deal with issues ranging from stress to mental health to hazardous substances.
5. Equality – Unions lead the fight for equal opportunities in the workplace. They will stand for equal pay and treatment in the workplace and will combat discrimination.
Where can I find information on trade unions?
www.tuc.org.uk is one of the top websites available to help you decide on whether joining a union is right for you and if so, which one.
It has information on all of the major unions throughout the UK, useful sections on work rights, equality and can provide you with advice on issues you may be having.
Click here to find the right union for you.
How much will it cost me?
Joining a union provides you with many benefits and a membership can start from 50p per week for new members based on your salary. For more information regarding prices and benefits visit the union tool finder.
What have unions done for its members recently?
Unions are regularly fighting for its members to secure rights or to improve working conditions. Recently, Unions have helped its members to:
Agree a deal with Southern rail regarding driver only trains. Read more here.
Resolve issues around their pension after the closure of BHS. Read more here.
For more updates on what unions are doing for its members visit their website here.