I am a member of a union of workers. I am proud to be member. Unions are very important, more than ever now. Strongly unionised workers generally have better pay and better working conditions than than non unionised workers.
Many workers say, what it the point? What can a union do for me? This sort of comment comes from someone in a non union work place.
Of course if you a white collar worker for a private company, you may be doing ok. It rather depends.......
I don't understand why low paid workers don't feel like they should be in a union. Governments (expenditure) and private companies (profit) want to keep labour costs as low as possible. Fair enough.
Workers want more pay and better and safer working conditions.
The twain shan't meet. As an individual, it is hard to stand up to bosses and argue your case. But if you have clever people, elected union officials, to do you bidding, then you will be in a much better position.
We have moved on from extremely dangerous workplaces to just dangerous workplaces. Far too many people are killed and badly injured at their workplace and many suffer mental distress from work pressure and work place where customer contact is often fraught or relations with fellow workers are bad.
None of the above are good, but they would be a whole lot worse if it wasn't for unions keeping pressure on employers over safety.
Unions even have their own political party in Australia, known as the Labor Party, and it is presently in power, but not doing much for the workers of Australia. But to be fair, it has done a lot in the area of social justice, far more than our previous conservative government ever did.
Clearly even business can see how unions can work, as they set up their own, but with fancier names, such peak bodies, associations and other such words that essentially replace the word union.
Even dairy farmers had a type of a union, a co-operative which was owned by them and collectively bargained with those who would buy their milk products. They rid themselves of co-ops to go it alone with their negotiations by selling directly to private milk processing companies. Look how that turned out.
Wheat farmers? Shut down the Wheat Board and the same bad results for the growers.
Individuals have little power. Collections of individuals have a lot more power. Note the success of organisations such as Get Up and I was very surprised to learn recently that Change.org online petitions can be very successful, so don't think it is just a waste of time signing one.