Learning for Life visit from UNITE Trade Union
Glenn and Jan came into school to visit most of year 9, 10 and 11. The aim was to inform us about unions so that in the future, we can make an informed decision about whether we want to join or not.
In a union, you have to pay some money every month but the money is used to help the members of the union when they might need it e.g. if they need a solicitor to stand up for them.
We saw a clip that showed us how there is strength in numbers. The Unions have been able to change unfairness at work by making sure that the people stick together. One person on their own may not be able to make a difference but a group of people will have more strength.
I was surprised to know that Unions have helped to change some things that make a difference to us nowadays e.g. a two day weekend, minimum wage and maternity/paternity leave.
We tried negotiating ourselves. Half the class were the bosses, starting up a business. The other half were employees. Both groups made lists of their requirements and then representatives from each group came together. Our bosses wanted to employ women only at £7.50ph. The employers wanted jobs for men and women at £15.20ph. Compromises needed to be made so that both sides were happy. It was funny watching the negotiations take place but compromises were reached in the end. Unions don’t like to strike. It really is a last resort after negotiating first.