by James Sherk
The Heritage Foundation
August 29, 2012
Backgrounder
Unions negotiate workers’ terms of pay, promotion, layoff, and retirement; union members may not bargain for themselves. However, very few union members voted for this representation. Once organized, unions remain certified indefinitely: Most union members join as a condition of employment. At the very least, unions should regularly stand for re-election. Even better, Congress and state legislatures should allow workers to choose whether they want union representation, and if so, who represents them—unionized or not. This would give workers the ability to negotiate terms that represent their needs, instead of being forced into a one-size-fits-all contract. The right to join, or refuse to join, a union rests on freedom of association. Union members should have the same rights as other citizens to decide who will represent them.



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