Pub. date: 2007 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952651 | Print ISBN: 9781412924702 | Online ISBN: 9781412952651| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Unions—or more specifically, labor or trade unions—are found throughout the world and can be broadly defined as associations of workers, the purpose of which is to represent the working interests of their members with respect to wages, hours, grievance procedures, and working conditions, through collective bargaining with the employer. Collective bargaining is a process of negotiation between union and management representatives about the terms and conditions of employment, and the rights and responsibilities of the union. There are two main types of union: craft unions and industrial unions. Craft unions are historically the oldest form of union and consist of workers who possess a particular skill. Today, most craft unions represent members from a variety of occupations and skills, often unrelated to the original founding craft. Craft unions derive their power by controlling the supply of skilled labor. Industrial unions are composed of all workers in a given industry or ...