Labor Union

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Unionmovements and reasons for their formation

Laborunion movements are formed within a company or country to protect thecommon interest of the employees regardless of their workingindustry. The unions were formed after it was discovered that mostbosses mistreated a good number of their juniors. There was the need,therefore, to protect the rights of the workers who were subject toabuse by their employers. The rights could only be fought better bysuch workers joining the labor unions.

Severalreasons led to the creation of labor unions, especially in theworkplaces. For instance, most companies paid very low salarieshence these unions wanted a better payment that could be achieved bysetting the industry average. Also, the working conditions werepathetic posing a threat to the health of the workers, and this wasagainst the unions’ aims. In other sectors, laborers toiled fortwelve hours and the movements wanted it to be reduced to eight hoursper day. In other cases, employees could be fired without genuinereasons of doing so and their interests could not be given thenecessary attention (McQuarrie, 2015).

Examinationof issues facing Shawn and his co-workers

Thereare particular issues that Shawn and his colleagues are facing thatthe unions could help to sort out. The promotions, in the company,depend on how well the management recognizes an individual regardlessof his education and skills. People like Shawn, have worked in thesame position for the last ten years, and this gives him the right toenjoy the privileges of the veterans. The labor union requires thatthere should be a Veteran’s Employment and Training Services (VETS)for the benefit of the longest serving members of a givencorporation.

Thecompany pays low wages, but the unions set a minimum remuneration.The association advocates for the collective bargaining consensuseswhere the workers and their employers could square out the issue ofpayment constructively. In other instances, the employees have aright to ask for a pay rise and evaluations at their place of work.They work for long hours, and this come along with severe stress. Themovements require that they work for only eight hours a day and fortyhours for the whole week. In the company, Shawn and the co-workersare overworking, their health and safety standards have declined, andnothing has been done by the management to alleviate theseconditions. The unions work towards ensuring that they set safetystandards and regulations at the workplace that should be followed byall the companies. The fact that Shawn collects overtime in otherdepartments is not a privilege, but he should understand that unionsrequire workers to get paid when they toil beyond the regular time intheir respective firms. If Shawn does what he likes, without anyinterference from the management, then this may give rise toemployees’ discrimination at the company, which is against the wishof the labor movements.

Thereis a threat in the industry to fire the workers and employ others.The union does not permit this as it gives the all laborers the rightto strike. In the case of termination of services, the associationwill give a final decision.

Challengesof unions to Shawn and his co-workers

Althoughthere are advantages that accrue to members of an association, thiscan pose some problems as well to the workers. First, the hardworking employees may be devalued because the union authorizes thosein the same level to be paid equally. This can be unfair because somemembers deserve a better pay than others since they show extracommitment in their daily tasks. Secondly, the seniority becomestoxic because the labor movements require that those who have workedwith the company for long period be promoted. This will benefit thelikes of Shawn, but it will be a disadvantage to the most qualifiedand skilled individuals at the firms. Thirdly, events like continuedstrikes may give rise to severe financial hardships during the periodthey are not at work. Those who may opt to return to work under thesame conditions will suffer social consequences from their co-workerswho are against such an idea. Lastly, there is a loss of personalautonomy as the workers rely on labor unions for most decisions thatare met at a cost of paying union dues (Adler, Tapia and Turner,2014).


Collectivebargaining refers to a process whereby the employers and employeescome together and negotiate to reach a consensusover the regulation of payments. The trade union representativesstand for the employees of a particular company to air theirinterests before the management (Hayter, 2011).

Ithas unique structures that should be followed, and they includeindividual contracting, managerial prerogative, award making, andcollective bargaining. The managerial prerogative is meant to solvespecific areas of decision-making where the managers of anorganization claim to have unfettered right when concluding them.This can include matters like promotions, controlling the production,and discipline among others. In individual contracting, theparticular employees and their employers set the terms and conditionsof the employment in their respective company. Negotiation is the keyto agreeing on such matters. Undeniably, it is meant to discuss thewages and other terms of employment between the workers’representatives and their employer to arrive at consent. Lastly,award making will ensure that there are legal documents that definethe terms of employment in a particular industry. The affectedorganizations will be required to observe the details of the documentthat describes the award making procedure.

Thecollective agreement merely sets the terms and conditions of theemployment that are settled between the employer and therepresentatives of the trade unions. The consent specifies the typeof employees covered as well as the time it should take.

Collectivedeals fall into different categories the first is distributivebargaining where both parties involved aim at maximizing their gains.Secondly, in integrative negotiation, the laborers, and employerssolve any conflict between them to reach an acceptance that servestheir interests amicably. Thirdly, is the productive bargaining thatis meant to increase the productivity of workers in most cases, itis done by management through giving laborers incentives and bonuses.Lastly, there is composite bargaining where the workers express allthe other working issues other than increasing the wages.

Additionally,the collective bargaining has it main provisions, which include thepurpose of the company management, union security, seniority, thesalary of the employees, the regular working and overtime hours, andthe discipline of the workers among others.


Thelabor unions have a critical role to play in ensuring that theinterests of workers are safeguarded. They help solve the conflictsthat emerge between the employers and employees in circumstanceswhere the two cannot agree. Although there are consequences to thosewho join the workers movements, it bears fruits to be members becauseof the benefits enjoyed.


Adler,L. H., Tapia, M., &ampTurner, L. (2014). MobilizingAgainst Inequality: Unions, Immigrant Workers, and the Crisis ofCapitalism.Cornell University Press.

Hayter,S. (2011). TheRole of Collective Bargaining in the Global Economy: Negotiating forSocial Justice.Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Pub.

McQuarrie,F. A. E. (2015). IndustrialRelations in Canada.Toronto: Wiley Publishers.

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