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Trade unions exist because we can achieve more together than we can alone. When working people band together, they’re much more likely to get decent wages and be treated well at work.

If you’re a union member and your employer recognises your union, you have far more formal and informal ways to resolve disputes or to deal with problems at work.

But it’s also worth being a union member even if your workplace doesn’t have a recognised union. You’ll still be able to get advice from your union, and a union officer can accompany you to meetings with management. And if your co-workers are also joining a union, you might be able to start the process of getting recognised.

If you’re not already a member of a union and would like to join, you can use our Union Finder tool to see which one is the best fit for you.

This section offers basic information on collective bargaining, industrial action and union reps. But the law around union activities is complicated, so you should seek advice before taking action.

How do we go about claiming union recognition?
It's best to invite the union's full-time official to approach the employer.
How can a union help?
If you are a union member and your employer recognises your union, it is very likely that there are both formal and informal routes for resolving disputes open to your union workplace representative. As soon as you think you may have a problem, you should raise it with your union rep and seek their advice.
What rights does a union have when it is recognised?
Independent union have a wide range of rights, including reasonable paid time off for reps...
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