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I want to join the IUOE, so what's next?
How do you go about getting organized?


      Getting organized is a straightforward proposition. It's as simple as the following steps indicate. However, we all know that nothing is ever simple. Getting organized is no different. As simple as the steps are, keep in mind that roadblocks can be thrown in your way by reluctant management and that processes may be delayed by overburdened government agencies. But if all things are equal, here is how you go about getting organized:
  1. A majority of the employees must sign a union authorization card. This signing is voluntary and commits you, the worker, to nothing more than affirming your interest in having a union represent you in your dealings with management.
  2. Based on at least the minimum number of cards being signed, your employer is asked to voluntarily recognize the union.
  3. If voluntary recognition is not granted by the employer, the union will file a petition with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) or state agency having jurisdiction asking to be certified as the bargaining representative for the employees.
  4. The union and the employer may agree on the make-up list of the bargaining unit, that is, what employees will come under the union umbrella, and agree to hold an election, or lacking agreement on the composition of the bargaining unit, the NLRB will conduct a formal hearing at which the union and the employer will present evidence and witnesses supporting their respective definitions of the bargaining unit. The NLRB then will determine, based on the hearing, the composition of the bargaining unit and order an election.
  5. The NLRB conducts an election for the employees to decide if they want a union to represent their interests. The union must receive 50 percent of the vote, plus one vote, to be certified as your bargaining representative.
  6. As your bargaining representative, the union enters into contract talks with management. It is important to note that the union brings its collective bargaining skills to the table; you, along with the other employees, determine the issues the union puts on the table.
  7. You, the employees, vote on accepting the negotiated agreement. In other words, you make the final determination.

      As you can see from the above, the process of getting organized is not all that difficult. But we remind you that it doesn't always go according to the script. Much depends on management's reaction to your desire to have a union. If management goes along with your wishes, then the process is relatively simple; if management tries to thwart your wishes, it may take a little longer, but by sticking together you will get it done.


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