Labor Unions Today

Topics: Employment, Organizational studies and human resource management, Trade union Pages: 3 (930 words) Published: September 14, 2006
Labor unions today
Today most labor unions in the United States are members of one of two larger umbrella organizations: the American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) or the Change to Win Federation, which split from the AFL-CIO in 2005. Both organizations advocate policies and legislation favorable to workers in the United States and Canada, and take an active role in Democratic party politics. The AFL-CIO is especially concerned with global trade issues. Private sector union members are tightly regulated by the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), passed in 1935. The law is overseen by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), part of the United States Department of Labor. Public sector unions are regulated partly by federal and partly by state laws. In general they have shown robust growth rates, for wages and working conditions are set through negotiations with elected local and state officials. The unions' political power thus comes into play, and of course the local government cannot threaten to move elsewhere, nor is there any threat from foreign competition. In California the public sector unions have been especially successful. To join a union, workers must either:

•be given voluntary recognition from their employer or
•have a majority of workers in a "bargaining unit" vote for union representation. In either case, the government must then certify the newly formed union. Public sector worker unions are governed by labor laws and labor boards in each of the 50 states. Northern states typically model their laws and boards after the NLRA and the NLRB. In other states, public workers have no right to establish a union as a legal entity. (About 40% of public employees in the USA do not have the right to organize a legally established union.) Once the union has won the support of a majority of the bargaining unit and is certified in a workplace, it has the sole authority to negotiate the conditions of employment....
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Does America Need Labor Unions Today? Research Paper
  • Are Labor Unions in the U.S. Obsolete? Essay
  • American Labor Movement-History and Issues Research Paper
  • Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union Essay
  • Apush Essay "How Successful Was Organized Labor in Improving the Position of Workers in the Period from 1975-1900?"
  • Labor Unions DBQ Research Paper
  • Labor Unions, Immigrants, Reconstruction, and American Industries Essay
  • Unions and Management Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free