The Union Member's Complete Guide: Everything You Want--And Need--To Know about Working Union

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9780965948616: The Union Member's Complete Guide: Everything You Want--And Need--To Know about Working Union

The Union Member's Complete Guide: Everything you want -- and need -- to know about working union

An easy-to-read, comprehensive guide to how you can get the most out of your job in a unionized workplace -- from understanding what a union is and how it operates to how you can get the most value out of your union card and what you can do to make your union more successful.

* Understanding how unions operate
* Getting your say in contract demands
* The full story on union dues
* A union's responsibility to its members
* Getting help with workplace problems
* Your union card's bonus benefits
* A member's rights and responsibilities
* Labor laws that affect you
* How to file a grievance
* Your union steward's role
* Contact info for every union

Le informazioni nella sezione "Riassunto" possono far riferimento a edizioni diverse di questo titolo.

From the Publisher:

If you're reading this book, odds are you're working in a unionized workplace–not because you participated in an organizing drive, but rather because your new workplace had unionized long ago. While organizing drives take place every day of the year, all over the country, the overwhelming majority of Americans who are represented by a union – probably well over 95 percent - did not personally participate in the effort. That job was done by the workers who preceded them. Since you may have "inherited" a union, you're not entirely clear about what that means. You want a better understanding of how your union works, your rights as a member, and your duties as one. You might not be convinced that you're stronger because of your union, or that as just one person you can do things that will build the union's strength or have an impact on the way the union operates.

On the other hand, maybe you're reading this book because you're employed in a non-union workplace, and you're curious about what life would be like if you and your co-workers had union representation. Although this book speaks directly to unionized workers, it paints a pretty good picture of what to expect if you and your co-workers "go union."

Or maybe you're one of those people who has just gone through a successful union organizing drive. Your entire workplace is on the verge of making the change to a union environment. You'd like a roadmap of what's next.

No matter. For all readers, this book steps back a pace and talks about the basics of unionism. We'll examine the basic elements of what a union does, how it does it, and your role in it all, so that you'll better understand how working life is improved when you have union representation. And you'll learn what you can–and should–do to make your voice heard when your union makes decisions that will affect you.

Why learn about unions? Because unions change nearly every aspect of workplace life:

Starting on a very practical level, everyone in a unionized workplace gets to make a decision as to whether to be a full, dues-paying member. You'll want to understand what unions do and how you fit into the picture, to make the smart decision: to become a full, active and involved member.

You can't know where you're going if you don't understand where you've been. Things are the way they are in your workplace and others because millions of workers won the fight to be represented by unions. The modern American labor movement has transformed tens of thousands of workplaces, and tens of millions of lives. Unionized workers earn more money, enjoy more benefits, and have greater job security than their non-union counterparts. (And, as you'll see later on, even non-union workers' jobs are improved because so many other workers have unionized.)

If you're like every other person who's ever lived, it's probably fair to say that there are some aspects of your working life that you don't like. Because unions are the most powerful tool workers have to gain control over what goes on in the workplace, to improve your situation you need to understand the possibilities and limitations of what a union can do.

The labor movement has been a major force in shaping American society. When you're a union member, and when you become actively involved in all the things the union does, you become part of something bigger than your individual life, and bigger than your workplace: you become part of one of the largest social movements in America today, a movement of close to 17 million men and women.

Finally, the fate of unionized American workers more and more is linked to the fortune of our fellow workers the world over. So American unions are speaking up more and more on international trade and environmental issues, human rights standards, and just about every other global issue. If your employer can get away with having a Mexican worker produce what you produce, at a fraction of your pay and no benefits, you better believe he'll do it. And he won't much care if a few rivers end up flowing with cancer-causing toxins in the process, either.

A Note About the Scope of This Book

People come in all shapes and sizes, and so do labor unions. There are public sector unions, representing employees of governments at all levels, and private sector unions, representing workers at privately owned companies. There are unionized workplaces in states, cities and towns with labor friendly laws, and there are unions in workplaces and locations where employees don't even have a legally protected right to bargain a contract. Different unions have dramatically different ways of structuring themselves and making decisions.

But no matter what setting you're in, there are basic concepts of labor-management relations, and the role of unions, that apply. So this book can give you a working knowledge of the nuts and bolts of union representation. As you read, though, keep in mind that the way things operate where you work will vary depending on what union you are represented by, what type of work you do, and a lot more. For specific answers to many questions that come up in your workplace, you'll need to consult with your union, with a knowledgeable lawyer, with an appropriate government agency, or with a worker advocacy group.

About the Author:

Author Michael Mauer began his labor relations career as an attorney with the National Labor Relations Board. He has held a variety of legal, bargaining and organizing positions with unions representing both public and private sector workers. Currently director of organizing and services for the American Association of University Professors, Mauer has also worked for the Washington-Baltimore local of The Newspaper Guild/CWA and served as collective bargaining director for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).

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