Organisations and unions
A UNISON case study

Page 4: Union power

UNISON prefers to resolve disputes between employees and their employer by negotiation. It is only when all negotiations have failed and the membership has been consulted through a vote or ballot th

at the union takes action to settle a dispute. The union will adopt different tactics to place maximum pressure on the employer to compromise.

As with all other unions, UNISON believes it is important that members democratically agree with any action the union takes. When all else has failed, the action taken is known as industrial action. This may take the form of:

  • a strike involving all members
  • selective strike action
  • action short of strike action or working to rule
  • refusing to work overtime or unsociable hours.

Other ways of attracting support and publicising issues include running different campaigns around national or regional matters. A local campaign might involve, for example, UNISON resisting the closure of a local school or hospital.

UNISON | Organisations and unions

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