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Local 243 Organizing Department

Phone: (734) 420-6900 ext. 106

(All calls are kept confidential)

 

 

Five Basic Steps to Organizing a Union

 


 

STEP 1: BUILD AN ORGANIZING COMMITTEE

Build an Organizing Committee ...

Leaders are identified and an organizing committee representing all major departments and all shifts and reflecting the racial, ethnic and gender diversity in the workforce is established. Organizing committee training begins immediately. Committee members must be prepared to work hard to educate themselves and their co-workers about the union and to warn and educate co-workers about the impending management anti-union campaign. The organizing committee must be educated about workers’ right to organize.

Also at this step basic information about the workplace must be gathered including:

  • workplace structure: departments, work areas, jobs, shifts

  • employee information: name, address, phone, shift, job title, and department for each worker (employee list)

  • employer information: other locations, parent company, product(s), customers, union history

 

 

STEP 2: ADOPT AN ISSUES PROGRAM

Identify the issues in your workplace ...

The committee develops a program of union demands (the improvements you are are organizing to achieve) and a strategy for the union election campaign. A plan for highlighting the issues program in the workplace is carried out through various organizing campaign activities.

 

STEP 3: SIGN-UP MAJORITY ON UNION CARDS

Sign people up ...

Your co-workers are asked to support the Teamsters and the union program by signing authorization cards. The goal is to sign-up a sizable majority. This "card campaign" should proceed quickly once begun and is necessary to hold a union election.

 

 

STEP 4: WIN THE UNION ELECTION

Win the union election ...

The signed cards are used (and required) to petition the state or federal labor board to hold an election. It could take the labor board several weeks before scheduling the election. The union campaign must continue and intensify during the wait. If the union wins, the employer must recognize and bargain with the union. Winning a union election not only requires a strong, diverse organizing committee and a solid issues program, but there must also be a plan to fight the employer’s anti-union campaign.

 

STEP 5: NEGOTIATE A CONTRACT

Negotiate a first contract ...

The organizing campaign does not let up after an election victory. The real goal of the campaign, a union contract (the document the union and the employer negotiate and sign, covering everything from wages to how disputes will be handled), is still to be achieved. Workers must be mobilized to support the union’s contract demands (decided by you and your co-workers) and pressure the employer to meet them.

 

ORGANIZED! MAKE IT YOUR UNION!

Organized!

 

 

 

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Locations

 

Metro-Detroit Hall:

39420 Schoolcraft

Plymouth Township, MI 48170

 

Lansing Hall:

5800 Executive Drive

Lansing, MI 48911

   
   

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