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Trade Unions & Employment Law. GCSE Business Studies. tutor2u ™. Revision Presentations 2004. Trade Unions. Organisation that employees can join in order to have their interests and goals better represented Categories

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trade unions employment law

Trade Unions & Employment Law

GCSE Business Studies


Revision Presentations 2004

trade unions
Trade Unions
  • Organisation that employees can join in order to have their interests and goals better represented
  • Categories
    • Craft of skills union - represent skilled workers e.g. Musicians Union (MU)
    • Industrial unions - represent members of one particular industry e.g. Fire Brigades Union (FBU)
    • General unions - unions which recruit workers from all types of industries and with any level or range of skills e.g. Amicus – Manufacturing Science and Finance Union (MSF)
    • White-collar unions - represent office workers e.g. National Union of Teachers (NUT)
trades union congress tuc
Trades Union Congress (“TUC”)
  • Role: to represent all British trade unions at a national and international level
  • Tries to influence government decision making in best interests of unions and workers
  • Coordinates with trade union movements in other EU countries
benefits of union membership
Benefits of Union Membership
  • To an employee
    • More powerful voice when bargaining as a group (e.g. for pay rises) as can threaten industrial action such as strikes
    • Workers will have their individual rights better protected e.g. if dismissed unfairly or discriminated against
  • To an employer
    • Cheaper and quicker to bargain with one trade union representative than individual workers
    • Workers are better motivated if they feel their interests are being looked after by trade unions
collective bargaining
Collective Bargaining
  • When one trade union representative negotiates with employers on behalf of all workers belonging to that trade union
  • Negotiations may involve areas such as pay, working conditions and fringe benefits.
forms of industrial action
Forms of Industrial Action
  • Strike
  • Work to rule
  • Boycott
  • Go slow
  • Overtime ban
reasons for declining influence of trade unions
Reasons for Declining Influence of Trade Unions
  • Laws passed which have weakened power of trade unions
  • Decline in trade union membership
  • Change in structure of industry from heavily unionised manufacturing industry towards service sector businesses
  • Change in philosophy from conflicts due to collective bargaining to individual bargaining between firms and employees
employers associations
Employers’ Associations
  • Represents views and interests of companies within a certain industry
  • Act like a pressure group on government and also negotiate with trade unions.
  • Examples
    • Universities and Colleges Employers Association
    • Engineering Employer’s Federation
main uk employment legislation
Main UK Employment Legislation
  • Equal Pay Act 1970
    • Ruled that both sexes should be treated equally in terms of pay and other employment issues
  • Sex Discrimination Act 1975
    • Made discrimination on grounds of sex or marital status illegal in all aspects of working life
  • Race Relations Act 1976
    • Made discrimination on grounds of colour, race or nationality in terms of employment illegal
  • Disability Discrimination Act 1995
    • Ruled that employers must treat a disabled person equally as others unless good reason
  • Working Time Regulations 1998
    • EU legislation that set a limit on maximum umber of hours (48 hours) employees should be required to work in a week. Employees can choose to work more hours if they wish.
minimum wage
Minimum Wage
  • Legal minimum hourly wage rate that a business can pay an employee
  • Introduced into UK in 1999
  • 2003 minimum wage for someone over 21 is £4-20
  • Rate is subject to regular reviews and is likely to be increased every few years as cost of living increases
businesses most affected by an increase in minimum wage
Businesses Most Affected by an Increase in Minimum Wage
  • Small businesses who find it harder to cope with increases in costs
  • Businesses which employ a large number of low-skilled workers
  • Examples:
    • Catering
    • Hotels
    • Leisure businesses