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View Diary: Why Unions? Labor 101 (269 comments)

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  •  Not quite accurate (8+ / 0-)

    Managers can't be in a union, but professionals, as long as they don't supervise other people, can be.

    However, the law separates out professionals into their own units, encouraging conflict between professionals and other folks in a company, often encouraging the professionals to identify more with management than other workers.

    The public sector does have separate rules and the success of organizing professionals there does reflect that there is nothing inherent in professionals that doesn't allow unionization.

    •  SEIU and AFSCME sort of handle public sector (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      farleftcoast, kraant


      Like at City, County and State workers

      Googling Monkeys-R-US -2.75,-3.54

      by Dour on Tue Jun 13, 2006 at 12:03:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  At the school where my husband teaches (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      (and I assume this is fairly common) the instructional supervisor for a department is also a teacher and a union member, even though s/he supervises other teachers.  I'm a little confused as to how this is allowed, although it seems to me that it makes sense that you don't necessarily have to be either labor or management -- it certainly makes sense to allow people to wear both hats.

      But if anyone wants to explain it to me, I'd be appreciative.

      •  Depends on state law (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ppluto, kraant

        Public school teachers are covered by state laws, which have different rules on whether supervisors and managers can be unionized.

        Ultimately, most supervisors aren't making the big decisions about funding and direction of the schools, so it's appropriate for lower-level supervisors to be protected-- even if regular labor law doesn't extend that to private sector employees.

    •  Further correction re: supervisors (0+ / 0-)

      It is not unlawful for supervisors to be in a union.  Rather, an employer under Taft-Hartley can lawfully refuse to bargain over the terms and conditions of supervisors, and can thus cause them to be effectively excluded from the benefits of union representation. (In the process of gaining representational rights, employers and unions often argue about who is truly a "supervisor" and thus entitled or not entitled to gain representational rights under T-H)   That may sound like semantics, but it is not, because there are some unions, like the Marine Engineers, like some in the entertainment field, where there are quite a number of supervisors and no one questions or repudiates it; the employers do not challenge it.  Moreover, in the public sector (at least in California), supervisors can form their own unions. (To be sure there are a number of states where public sector employees are still forbidden to organize at all).

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