19/05/2010 - Join the Union

A trade union is an organised group of workers. Its main goal is to protect  and advance the interests of its members.
Trade union members are only half as likely to be sacked as non members. In times of recession this is a valuable protection.
You are less likely to be sacked on grounds of political discrimination if you have Union membership. Unlike most Unions Solidarity doesn't discriminate on political grounds. Anyone can join Solidarity, from any background and working in any job or profession.
Being a member of Solidarity is also an insurance policy should experience difficulties or concerns at work. The Union gives you a huge range of benefits:
  • Unrivalled protection and representation at work in the event of disciplinaries or grievances i.e. if you feel you are being treated unfairly.      
  • Support for legal action including taking an employer to an  Employment Tribunal
  • Help with pay and conditions of service
  • Health and safety guidance and support
  • Help with legal services including some free help with work problems
  • A special number for help and advice on workplace issues
  • Online employment and workplace advice
  • A magazine The British Worker sent to your home (or e-mailed as a pdf ) 
Solidarity also informs and educates on  matters that affect your livelihood such as Opposition to Public Spending Cuts and British Jobs for British Workers.
We have been present as representatives in over 100 cases and assisted with advice on many more occasions. Since we have recruited over the last  three years around 500 members this is a very high proportion. We have on average over 10 cases on going at any one time.
Most of the cases have been 'Bread n' Butter' ones. For example we recently got a football club to allow a sub-contracted worker back on the premises after concerns over the resale of tickets. We intervened on a  grievance where the member was concerned that her contract was being breached. The employer immediately honoured that contract once they knew of the Union's involvement. A rival Union(s) pressured an employer to
deny our member the right to be represented by the Trade Union of her choice i.e. Solidarity. This is against the Employment Act and after taking them to an Employment Tribunal is resulting in an agreed payout to the member of over £1,000 as well as a promise of future cooperation. 
There are of course political cases where membership of a political party such as  the controversial British National Party (BNP) results in either unfair treatment or dismissal. Many of the cases involving Public Service workers e.g. the Walker brothers are impossible to win until we get one tested in Court but even here however we have been able to delay judgement (some remaining on pay) or have obtained settlements, one example being a payout of over £30,000 to our member.
For those involved in political activity it is not a matter of if but when they will experience problems of work. The Union is not a charity however so any non-member facing such problems will either be faced with fighting it alone or paying for representation directly. Only Solidarity has the experience and the motivation to fight such cases. 
Become a member by paying £8 a month here.
You can also pay for membership for one year by sending a cheque for £96 to Solidarity, Room 407, 12 South Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1DD or click here.