Portal:Organized Labour

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The purpose of organized labour is for workers to form "a continuous association of wage-earners for the purpose of maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment".

This is primarily achieved by use of the technique of collective bargaining, where labour organizations negotiate wages and working conditions with employers. Closely related is the concept of industrial action, in which an organization will call strikes and resist lockouts. Another characteristic of labour organizations are the provision of benefits for members, such as unemployment insurance, health insurance, pensions, funeral expenses, job training, and legal services. Organizations also often carry out political campaigns, lobbying, and support political candidates or parties. Operating costs are covered by the payment of dues and fees by members, with the expectation that the money be spent to benefit the membership.

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IWW "One Big Union" sticker. Design dates from the 1910s.
Industrial unionism is a labour union organizing method through which all workers in the same industry are organized into the same union—regardless of skill or trade—thus giving workers in one industry, or in all industries, more leverage in bargaining and in strike situations. Advocates of industrial unionism value its contributions to building unity and solidarity, many suggesting the slogans, "an injury to one is an injury to all" and "the longer the picket line, the shorter the strike."

Industrial unionism contrasts with craft unionism, which organizes workers along lines of their specific trades, i.e., workers using the same kind of tools, or doing the same kind of work with approximately the same level of skill, even if this leads to multiple union locals (with different contracts, and different expiration dates) in the same workplace.


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"The first thing a dictator does is abolish the free press. Next he abolishes the right of labor to go on strike."

-- George Seldes


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Labor News from Wikinews
  • July 16: British rail minister Claire Perry steps down
  • June 23: On the campaign trail in the USA, May 2016
  • January 21: Detroit teachers stage sickout to protest working conditions as Obama visits
  • September 7: US adds 173,000 jobs in August; unemployment rate drops to seven year low
  • August 10: US economy adds 215,000 jobs in July; unemployment rate remains steady at 5.3%

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Memorial marker for the Bay View Tragedy.


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The Organized Labour WikiProject is a group of editors who create and maintain labour-related articles. Here are some open tasks anybody can complete.

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