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Employment Law the Need for Unions - Assignment Example

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This paper "Employment Law – the Need for Unions" states that according to Peter Reith, his view against unions is based upon the fact that “there is too often resort to industrial action as the way to fix up problems instead of sitting down and talking between employers and employees.  …
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Employment Law the Need for Unions
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Download file to see previous pages Hence, it could hinder the process of interaction between individual employees and an employer and it might interfere with an individual employee’s wishes and freedom to negotiate terms of employment with an employer. The notion of unions also goes against the notion of the employment contract being a free will contractual arrangement between the parties, reflecting their individual wishes and the freedom to negotiate terms according to tot hose express wishes.
However, despite the above advantages that may be cited, I do not agree with Peter Reith’s views on the redundancy of unions in a modern global economy. I believe that unions should still be included as participants, largely to prevent exploitation and unfairness towards individual workers. Employers can designate workers as independent contractors and thereby escape payment of many of the benefits that may be accruing to employees. Employees cannot individually fight their employers in an industrial dispute. As pointed out by O’Connor J, “if the judicial power of the commonwealth is to be effectively exercised by way of conciliation and arbitration in the settlement of industrial disputes, it must be by bringing it to bear on representative bodies standing for groups of workmen….” 3 The observations made by O’Connor indicate that unions are necessary to redress the inherent power imbalance that exists between employer and employee. Moreover, in order to effectively adjudicate an industrial dispute, there must be a representative body that can defend and put forth the interests of the works. Since there is greater strength in a collective approach, the workers are likely to be benefited by unions. In today’s global age, where the urge for profits is overpowering, employers are tempted to exploit individual workers to a greater degree unless there is a representative body to watch out for their interests. Individual employees may not find it easy to ensure that employers meet their obligations, while the collective strength of a Union and the influence that it can wield is likely to be more effective in ensuring that employees do not shortchange their employees.   ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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