The Beginning or End of Unions

Topics: Employment, Trade union, Collective bargaining Pages: 3 (946 words) Published: September 29, 2011
Nicole Spratley HR330-01

Week 5 Assignment Project Outline

The Beginning or End of Unions

DeVry University

A Union is formed by a group of workers who join together to form a strong alliance against the company they work for. These alliances are formed so that these groups of people will have the means to peacefully bargain with their employers for safer working conditions, equality in the workplace concerning wages and health benefits, and better rights concerning discrimination due to race, handicap, sexual orientation, etc. In the late 1800’s unions began to form, however Unions became all powerful in the early 19th century. Unions had a great impact on having laws passed for the protection of children who had to work. Laws made sure that children could not work heavy machinery, did not work long hours, and that they were paid at least a minimum wage. Other unions worked towards having workers grueling 12 hour shifts reduced to 8hours. All powerful unions, enabled workers to be able to bargain against the company they worked for and use tools like picketing, strikes and boycotts as ways of negotiating with management. However, unions began to decline in the middle 20th century. Whether due to the recession (economic downturn) or employees wanting more control over their own destinies and the unions becoming obsolete due to many mandatory laws being passed by congress to protect the employee on the job. Unions have begun to lose their memberships, powers and bargaining tools.

One of the things, unions would need to help their membership rise is to change how Americans view them in general. Since the auto industry crisis and bailout, which failed, a lot of Americans have viewed the unions as the cause of the bailout failure, and not the executives at the helm. A Gallup poll was taken and the majority of Americans feel that unions have harmed instead of helped the economy. Many Americans felt that the bailout was not due to the...
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