Companies like Amazon and Starbucks are beginning to unionize, and the American workforce is changing. Employees are less likely to put up with poor wages, working conditions, and benefits than ever before, which means union organizers have been able to recruit more members.
Organized into a union, employees have greater bargaining power and can improve their occupations from the ground up.
Unfortunately, anti-union sentiment is pervasive at many companies, and both Amazon and Starbucks have even violated the National Labor Relations Act by union-busting, along with intimidating and retaliating against union organizers.
Employees Have the Right to Unionize
Under the National Labor Relations Act, you cannot get fired for unionizing or interacting with a union, and employers may not treat union members less favorably than non-unionized employees.
Throughout history, American workers have fought for better working conditions, and their victories include the 40-hour workweek and the introduction of child labor laws.
With the COVID-19 pandemic and the Great Resignation, now is a perfect time for employees to unionize and create the change they want to see in the workforce.
Both Democrats and Republicans agree on their support for unions, and the majority of U.S. workers want unions in their own workplaces. As large companies unionize, the public is paying attention.
What Do Workers Want?
In addition to more money and better working conditions, workers want a stronger voice on the job. Employees of all levels want to have a say on the issues that affect their employment, such as the company mission and how the workplace is structured.
Although the laws are stacked against them, many workers have prevailed in unionizing, and executives that want to avoid conflict are changing their tune – or simply listening to their employees outside of traditional employer/union negotiations.
Labor Laws in Need of Reform
The largest obstacle to unionizing in the United States is an outdated National Labor Relations Act, paired with little enforcement and conservative judges. When companies like Starbucks act out against unions, all they get is “a slap on the wrist.”
Meanwhile, unions must abide by strict rules and regulations to gain legitimacy.
Labor-management dynamics have changed, and the laws need to change, too.
In the meantime, workers have rights, including the right to unionize and engage in collective bargaining.
What If I Get Fired for Joining a Union?
You cannot get fired for joining – or refusing to join – a union. If you do, you have the right to file a wrongful termination lawsuit and recover your missed wages and other damages.
Donati Law, PLLC can help. We understand that employees only unionize when they want to work with management to make their companies better, and we will always protect your rights to speak out about poor working conditions.
At our firm, we seek to improve lives – the lives of our clients and everyone in our community. To do so, we have been supporting employees for more than 35 years, and we can help you with your case, too.
Ready to get started? Call us at (901) 209-5500 or contact us online for prompt legal assistance.