Joining the union
How much are union dues?
All NSGEU members pay union dues of 1.25% of gross annual earnings. Union dues are automatically deducted from your pay. For example, if you earn $30,000 you would pay $14.42/pay. Dues are not assessed on overtime or pay premiums. Dues are 100% tax deductible.
The NSGEU is non-profit and democratic: all spending decisions are made by NSGEU members.
What do I get for my union dues?
Your dues allow the NSGEU to provide you and your fellow workers with the benefits of being a union member. These include:
- Having the biggest, most powerful union in Atlantic Canada standing behind you;
- Negotiating contracts with better rates of pay and conditions of work;
- Making sure the employer follows the contract, and helping workers with grievances if there is a problem;
- Education and training for you and your fellow workers;
- The ability to take part in the union’s democratic structure.
Can the employer penalize me for supporting the union?
No. It is a fundamental right of every Canadian to belong to a union if they choose. It is against the law for any employer to threaten, intimidate or punish any employee because they want to join a union.
Can the employer make decisions that will affect my pay cheque without consulting the employees first?
Not if the employees are represented by a union. Once people decide to join a union, matters like wages, benefits, and insurance coverage are subject to negotiation. Then they’re written up in the collective agreement. The employer cannot unilaterally change the collective agreement.
Will we lose the benefits we already have?
At the application for certification your benefits are frozen “as is”. The employer cannot change them. Benefits are negotiated in the collective agreement. You and your fellow workers decide what benefits you want to demand in the agreement, and this is what we bargain for in the agreement.
Will we have to go on strike if other locals go on strike?
No. The decision whether or not to go on strike is made democratically by you and your fellow workers.
HOW CAN THE UNION WORK FOR YOU
- Consistent and reasonable scheduling of hours and a guaranteed amount of hours for each employee
- Fair wages for all employees
- The ability to challenge the employer in matters of disagreement in a professional exchange … and actually see things change
- Union representation in meetings regarding discipline
- Your rights are protected under a collective agreement, in which you have a say
- Adequate benefits such as sick time, vacations, RRSP contribution and pension plans
- Occupational Health and Safety enforcement
- Fairly distributed employment opportunities
- A say in your workplace and a feeling of empowerment!
These are only some of the many benefits union membership can provide. It is time to say yes! If you have any further questions or concerns, call me.
All calls are confidential. Lori Smith, NSGEU Organizing Officer. 902.456.6531
Remember, it’s not too late to sign a card.
Members of NSGEU contribute 1.25% in union dues. To make this clear, if you earn $30,000/year, you contribute $14.42/pay. 100% of the membership dues you contribute are tax deductible! Nobody questions the necessity of insuring their home, their car, their life. Union dues are a way of insuring your job! If you have a car accident, your rates increase. Your union dues are the same no matter how much you rely on NSGEU. As well, you will not pay union dues until you have a signed collective agreement! NSGEU is non-profit all dues collected are spent on the members! So … what do you get for your union dues?
- Almost 30,000 fellow members standing beside you
- Contracts with better rates of pay and working conditions
- A voice in your workplace
- Holding your employer accountable to the negotiated contract in all areas
- Education and training
- Access to scholarships and bursaries
- Employment contract related legal services
- Grievance process
- Fair hiring practices
Union dues pay for the services NSGEU provides to members. Union membership is worth every penny!