Advantages and Disadvantages of Labor Unions

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Trade unions, also known as labor unions are workers associations that are established by employers or labor to achieve the demands for improved working conditions. According to Docherty & Velden (2012), a labor union is an organization of workers who come together to achieve objectives such as better wages and working conditions. Over the decades, labor unions have received a divided opinion on whether they are good or bad for workers. Having been a member of workers union, various merits come with the unions.

Labor unions have substantial impact concerning employees. In the case of employees, being under union or being unionized comes with varying advantages. One of the primary gain for being a member of a labor union increases job security. Compared to non-unionized workers, unionized employees depends on their union to make a final decision in case of termination and or disciplinary cases (Reichart & Durrenberger, 2010). This is whereby, the employer cannot dismiss a unionized employee without consulting with his/her union unlike the case with workers without unions. On the other hand, labor union provides a reliable platform for workers to file grievances in case of misunderstanding with the union negotiating with the employer on the worker’s behalf. In addition to representing the workers in cases of disciplinary, labor unions also helps workers to negotiate for better pay, better working conditions, as well as other merits such as health coverage, sick leave, paid vacation among other benefits (Docherty & Velden, 2012). In summary, advantages of labor unions entail collective bargaining, offering support, giving workers a voice, as well as promoting fairness and equality.

Nevertheless, there are demerits related to labor unions to the workers. For example, in case of strikes, the union prevents workers from attending their jobs, which in turn hold employees who may have the will to work (Reichart & Durrenberger, 2010). More so, strikes are downsides of unions. However, labor unions provide better returns than bad ones, and in turn the conclusion that, labor unions are good for workers. I have been a member of a union and found it a worthwhile as it I enjoyed the numerous merits related to labor unions.


Reichart, K. S., & Durrenberger, E. P. (2010). The Anthropology of Labor Unions. Boulder, Colo: University Press of Colorado.

Docherty, J. C., & Velden, J. d. (2012). Historical Dictionary of Organized Labor. Lanham, Md: Scarecrow Press.

October 30, 2023

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