What is a Union?

By Aakanksha Kulkarni2 min read · Posted Sep 8, 2022

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Unions, also known as labor or trade unions, are essential organizations in today's society; they serve as grounding communities for millions of individuals spanning many diverse industries. Unions assist workers and are at the forefront of the conversation about industry conditions and labor regulations. To understand what a union is, along with its pros and cons, keep on reading!

What Does a Union Do?

Unions voice the concerns and agitations of workers and laborers in a specific industry. This can range from promoting workplace safety regulations to fighting for better job security. For example, the National Education Association (NEA) is an education union representing legions of teachers, faculty, and other educators across the United States. As such, the NEA supports giving educators the resources they need to be successful in classrooms and similar settings, improving pay for teachers and other members, and more.

Why are Unions Important?

Trade unions are important because they serve as a collective and influential advocate for workers' issues. Independently, workers seldom implement significant changes in their respective industries. Unions give workers a better platform to voice their concerns, ensuring the community acknowledges their requirements.

The Pros of Unions

Unions provide workers with renewed conviction through which they can fight for positive changes in their industry. Unions can also create greater job security for workers by providing legal support against unsubstantiated employer practices. Furthermore, labor unions help workers’ families by providing more benefits and rewards for such groups.

The Cons of Unions

While helpful in regulating industry practices, being a part of a trade union can also mean that workers who do not put as much effort into their work are given the same treatment under the union as workers who do. This imbalance of work quality and treatment can lead to further problems such as hard-working laborers leaving the union due to inequitable treatment, lower levels of worker collaboration, and more.

Conclusion

As such, maintaining a fair and equitable work standard in a trade or labor union is incredibly important for preserving the welfare of its members. Unions are crucial in the fight for better working conditions and maintaining a successful work model in various industries, yet can also lead to the deterioration of equitable and solicitous labor practices.

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Aakanksha Kulkarni

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