Having a union on your side makes your job and your workplace safer and fairer. Your employer pays you better and is more likely to provide benefits that help you balance work with life at home. Your health and ability to do your job become important, and your right to fair treatment gets enforced.
Unions make a difference both at work and in the quality of life you earn. We call that difference the union advantage.
In Canada unionized workers earn almost $5 more an hour than non-union workers. All together, that union advantage is worth $785.8 million each week to the country – money that gets spent in communities and supports our economy. But this advantage doesn’t just belong to union members. It benefits everyone.
Workers in unions are an important part of the local community and economy because that’s where they spend their paycheques. Their incomes support local businesses (who create local jobs) and bolster the local tax base, which supports public works and community services that add to everyone’s quality of life.
The benefits enjoyed by unionized workers (dental insurance, extended health care coverage and legal insurance, to name a few) attract and support dentists, opticians, chiropractors, therapists, health specialists, and family lawyers whose services are available to everyone in the community.
When unions stand up for fairness, they raise the bar for everyone. Many of the things first won by unions are enjoyed by all workers today – minimum wages, overtime pay, workplace safety standards, maternity and parental leave, vacation pay, and protection from discrimination and harassment.
Communities with more union members enjoy relatively higher incomes overall. They support a richer mix of business and services that diversify the local economy, and add to the quality of life.
They are better places to work and live.