A trade union is an organization with members who are workers or employees in a particular affiliated industry. The union looks after the members’ interests at work by such like negotiating conditions with employers on pay and conditions, drastic changes like large-scale redundancy, discussing members’ concerns with employers, and walking members through disciplinary and grievance meetings.
A nursing union is a collaboration of nurses bound by common interests and ideas. These unions share information about legislation, politics, and rights within the public sector. Professional nursing unions and the nursing associations they represent help ensure that legislation and actions made by the government affect nurses positively. The nurse’s union is used as a group of people who work to make changes for their profession by influencing politicians or working with other registered professionals such as doctors. You can find nursing unions at the local, area, state, and national levels. Unionized nurses can be found working in hospitals, schools, universities, nursing homes, and the public sector.
- A union has the power and strength of numbers to negotiate enforceable contracts that improve working conditions (like acceptable nurse-to-patient ratios), the role of nurses in managing standards of care, when nurses work overtime, pay scales, etc.
- Through a union you can get involved in political activism through lobbying government and other bodies to develop, influence and implement a policy that improves the quality of patient care; participate in campaigns that recognize the importance of nurses, health care assistants and nursing students as well as the outcomes for patients.
- Many union members enjoy the benefit of direct representation by union staff in the workplace. This is especially valuable when disciplinary actions or grievance actions are being undertaken
- Unions offer legal support in court and may offer a payout if you can no longer work due to illness or injury. They also offer advice and support on employment matters, career development, immigration and welfare.
- Most unions also offer Indemnity Insurance as part of membership. Indemnity Insurance is a mandatory requirement for The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Registration. Without Indemnity Insurance you cannot practice as a nurse