unions

Victimised reps forced to lobby their union in fight for support

PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka holding a megaphone

Two union reps sacked by their employer for their trade union activities are lobbying the National Executive Committee of the PCS union tomorrow. In two very similar cases of union busting and victimisation, the union has failed to offer adequate support in quite different ways.

“Every action was done collectively”: An interview with newly unionised TEFL workers

Faced with an attack on their working conditions, TEFL workers in Dublin formed a union, threatened to strike, and beat back a pay cut!

The Pop Up Union: a postmortem

Pop-up union members take part in national demo

When management at the University of Sussex announced plans to outsource 235 jobs, workers responded by launching a 'Pop-Up Union', a new tactic in modern British industrial relations. Is this a model other workers can emulate?

"Leave it to the professionals": on paid union organisers

A response to a blog criticising the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) union for not making enough use of paid organisers and officials. With animated gifs.

The Decline of the I. W. W.

Walsenberg (Colorado) IWW Hall, after attack on January 12, 1928

Despite its gloomy title, The Decline of the IWW is a lively account of the period 1917–1931 and a worthy successor to Paul Brissenden’s seminal The I.W.W. : a study of American syndicalism, which took the story up to 1917. During the period in question, the IWW had to deal with state repression, work out its relations with Communist organizations, survive internal splits, and compete with other forms of industrial unionism. Includes material on the IWW’s educational campaigns and industrial research, plus an extensive bibliography of IWW publications and periodicals.

Working for a hypocritical business union

An account from a paid staffer of working for the AFL-CIO and dealing with petty management.

Solidarity: a union which betrays its name

Next week Solidarity will organize its anniversary festival in Gdansk. It will be punctuated by such events as a huge mass in a grand cathedral and a ceremony dedicated to union-busting Ronald Reagan.

The same, only in a different way - Gabriel Miasnikov

In this essay written in 1920, the Bolshevik left communist Gabriel Miasnikov examines the limitations of the Russian trade unions in the context of what he perceived to be the economic and political supremacy of the soviet institutions, but concludes that the trade unions must be preserved for purposes of domestic public relations (due to the habits of the Russian workers) and international propaganda (due to the predominant concepts concerning revolution outside of Russia where soviet-type institutions do not exist or are quickly destroyed and revolution is conceived as a trade union affair) and therefore they must be given something to do to keep them busy.

The binds that tie: unions, ‘solidarity’, civil society and foreign policy in Bangladesh

Striking Tuba workers

A look at the new unions emerging as part of the reforms of the garment industry – and Western influences on them. Plus workers continue to struggle to be paid what they are owed...

When the union's the enemy: an interview with Cleo Silvers

Cleo Silvers, a former organizer with the League of Revolutionary Black Workers, discusses racism in the labor movement with Andrew Elrod.