United Tech & Allied Workers at Apple

United Tech & Allied Workers at Apple

What’s the difference between an employee representation team and a recognised trade union?

Employee Representation TeamRecognised Trade Union
Inform and consult Inform, consult and negotiate
Give feedback on management plans Give feedback and vote on changes
Ask for changes to be made Demand changes and threaten action

Legally, Apple only needs to inform and consult the ERT. With a recognised trade union they must inform, consult, and negotiate.

Without a union, Apple can make changes to your pay, holiday entitlements and terms and conditions. They are required to let the ERT know about changes and listen to feedback, but they don’t have to implement any of it.

Whilst they may “take it into consideration”, at the end of the day they can enforce changes because of “business needs”. With a recognised trade union, Apple needs to negotiate on pay, holiday and changes to terms and conditions.

Having a recognised union means that staff have greater democracy as they get to elect reps and vote on any changes the company proposes.

Union recognition gives staff leverage when negotiating with the company. Whilst never desirable, union members can legally take industrial action; this not only means striking but also other actions, for example work-to-contract. This legal right gives you power in negotiations and ensures that Apple must take its workers’ union seriously.

It’s a fact that unionised workplaces have better pay, better health and safety and overall better terms and conditions.

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