It is well known within the labour movement that union density has consistently declined over the past 40 years. Recent research conducted by Statistics Canada, unsurprisingly, confirmed that the trend is continuing downwards. In this article, Adam King speaks about this troubling decline, its causes, and the impact on all workers.
This trend is troubling to the movement and to all workers as it demonstrates that less workers are protected and receive the benefits offered under a collective agreement. It is also worth noting that union density has a positive impact on non-unionized workers by setting standards for compensation and benefits. Driven by negative shifts in the private sector, union density decline is cause for immense concern for workers across Canada.
“If Canada’s long-term decline in union density is to be reversed, a combination of new organizing and legislative reform will be needed. Major union investments in staff organizers and institutional capacity are vital to grow the ranks of private sector union members. But unions will continue to fight an uphill battle without legislative changes that make certification easier and help ensure newly organized workers can remain union members into the future.”