United Food and Commercial Workers
UFCW Local 540 Texas

Know Your Rights

The US Government Protects Your Right to Join a Union

The federal government guarantees you the right to organize a union. And just so no one can try to tell you differently, here are the actual words from the law:

“Section 7. Employees shall have the right to self-organization, to form, join, or assist labor organizations, to bargain collectively through representation of their own choosing, and to engage in other concerted activities for the purposes of collective bargaining . . . and shall have the right to refrain from any or all such activities . . . “

Further, this law protects you in exercising your rights by making it illegal for an employer to interfere. Here’s the actual words of the law:

“Section 8. (a) It shall be an unfair labor practice for an employer — (1) to interfere with, restrain or coerce employees in the exercise of the rights guaranteed in section 7; . . . and (3) by discrimination in regard to hire or tenure of employment, to encourage or discourage membership in any labor organization . . . “

What this means in simple language is that the United States Government itself guarantees you the right to help organize, to join, and to support a union of your choice. This includes such activities as signing a union card, getting others to sign cards, attend union meetings, wear union buttons, pass out union literature, and talk union to other workers as long as it doesn’t interfere with work.

You cannot be penalized in any way because of union activity or support. You cannot have your overtime cut, be transferred to a less desirable job, suspended, or discharged. If any employer does any of these things because of your union activity or support, the law says the worker must be reinstated to his former job without loss of seniority, and the employer must pay him for all lost wages plus interest. So stand up for your rights. Remember: Uncle Sam stands behind you! It’s the law!