Union rights

Share this page

Trade union rights - freedom of association and the right to effective collective bargaining - are human rights. Freedom of association ensures that workers can work with each other and with their employers to negotiate work relations. Effective collective bargaining helps ensure that workers and employers negotiate on equal terms, allowing for fair, equitable outcomes.

Trade union rights are violated in many parts of the world. In some cases, workers are denied rights of association; in others, workers' organisations are disrupted and trade unionists are persecuted.

The TUC actively supports trade unionists who face discrimination and danger through the

At the 2015 ETUC Congress in Paris, Paul McCarthy from the GMB, a member of the TUC delegation, spoke about the Trade Union Bill.
05 October 2015
TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady has written to EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom in response to an EU consultation on reviewing the free trade agreement between the EU and Mexico. Her letter calls for workers' rights to be central to negotiations and any new agreement.
28 August 2015
TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady has written to the Cambodian Prime Minister as part of a global trade union movement campaign to press for improvements to the draft Cambodian trade union law.
09 August 2015
TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady has written to the Iranian consulate in London as part of an Amnesty International campaign for prisoner of conscience Ismail Abdi, a teacher union leader detained on his way to the Education International global trade union conference in Canada. You can write too - see...
05 August 2015
The TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady has protested to the President of Iran about the arrest of teacher trade union leader Esmail Abdi on his way to attend the world congress of Education International, the global teacher union body. The TUC has also protested to the Foreign Secretary, and has...
14 July 2015
Commenting on the announcement today (Monday) that 42 people in Bangladesh have been charged with murder in connection with the Rana Plaza factory collapse which killed almost 1200 people in 2013, TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “It is important that those responsible for the terrible loss of life at...
01 June 2015
On the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh, the TUC is today (Friday) calling for urgent action on widespread violence against trade unions in Bangladesh and unpaid compensation to the victims of Rana Plaza.
24 April 2015
The TUC has urged the Somali Prime Minister to uphold the rights and entitlements of workers and their representatives enshrined in the ILO conventions ratified by the Government of Somalia without any interference from the Ministry of Labour.
23 April 2015
In a letter to Chancellor George Osborne, on the occasion of the World Bank/IMF Spring Meetings to be held in Washington from 17 to 19 April 2015, the TUC has urged the Government to support the Global Unions position on economic growth based on decent work while emphasising the need...
09 April 2015
The Federation of Somali Trade Unions (FESTU) is organising informal sector workers in Somalia through a project funded by TUC Aid. A survey on pay and working conditions has been carried out in Mogadishu and Puntland as part of the initiative, followed by a workshop aimed at developing an action...
24 March 2015