A labor union is also called trade union. This is a group or an organization of workers or employees that have come together to accomplish a common goal, for instance better working conditions and a better pay (Krueger, 1995). The leadership of the labor union bargains on behalf of the union members with the employer. They negotiate the labor terms and conditions of the contract together with the employers. This is called collective bargaining on issues such as work rules, wages, workplace safety, policies, rules and regulations governing hiring, promotion and firing of employees and benefits at work place. The negotiation agreement between the union leaders and the employer is binding on all union members (Foner, 2000).
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There are some changes that labor unions should undertake in order to maintain support from the community, the employer and the members. These changes include:
- Labor unions can advocate for favorable legislations that are fair and just to all the stakeholders (members, community and the employer). They can do this through lobbying and campaigns to the relevant authorities for laws to be changed. They convince the members of parliament to enact laws governing the labor union agreement with the employers (Foner, 2000).
- Apply the collective bargaining strategy where the employer and the union leadership can openly negotiate and agree on the terms and conditions of employment and the wages. The agreement will depend on the economic conditions of the company or the country.
- The labor union should convince the government and the political to support the union’s demands by ensuring the employers fulfill what the union demands (Krueger, 1995).
Labor unions are expectig a decline in the influence by the political class membership (Foner, 2000). Membership decline will be caused by the fact that the union leadership is no longer effective in ensuring members demands are fulfilled by the employers. Members are no longer interested in the labor unions because the leadership has been manipulated in the past years through bribery so as not to pressurize employers to meet the member’s demands. The members contribute some money to the union which has made them to feel bitter because they don’t realize the value or the impact of the contributions they make to the union (Foner, 2000).
Membership will also decrease because most union members have decided to be self employed by starting their own business hence most of them don’t see any need of being a member of a labor union (Foner, 2000). Some members fear being sacked or fired incase a strike is called and the employer decides to fire all those who participated in the strike. Labor unions have been blamed and accused by the members for being bias by benefiting a few people only (insider workers) at the expense of the majority. This has been experienced where someone secure a job at the cost of the contributor to the union. For this reason therefore, most members can decide to quit leading to a decreased membership. This therefore will lead to a membership decrease because some members will not be interested in the labor unions (Foner, 2000).
Political influence will decrease because most politicians usual use the union demands to achieve their political goals. Politicians usually pretend to be fighting for the rights of employees in order to be elected as a leader of an elective position in a country may be as a seenator or a governor. Reduced members in the labor union may not attract many politicians because they know they will not get any votes due to lack of members (Krueger, 1995).
Generation Y is known as the generation next or the millennial generation which describes a group of people following generation X. They are referred to as baby boomers due to their population increase (Shapira, 2008). Most of the generation Y is the youth who are unemployed hence can causes unrest in the country. It will force the labor union to fight for their rights and to secure jobs for them; hence forcing the governments to start youth employment schemes so as to counter the negative effects of the social unrest. Generation X are a few people hence they cannot not be heard and most of them are old therefore they may not cause too much trouble as youths of generation Y. generation Y will demand from the labor union their rights because they are the majority (Shapira, 2008).
The global workforce can influence the strategies of the union because they may lose some members due to the fact that people can secure jobs anywhere in the world (Krueger, 1995). This means that, if a person can secure a well paying job with favorable terms and conditions, he will not need to a member a labor union. However, due to global work force, it may revive labor union because members will be drawned from all over the world hence demanding their needs from the employers can be heard because of their big numbers. Unity is strength hence labor unions can achieve their goals of fighting for the workers rights. This will make them more aggressive because they may paralyze the operations of the companies in the whole world incase they call for a strike (Foner, 2000).