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Starting a union New Jersey

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  • Starting a union New Jersey

    Due to many changes that the company I work for has been making, many employees are very upset. I've been around these forums many times and have gotten back to coworkers on issues which mostly always go back to a "it's not fair, but it's legal" situation. Because of some of the more recent changes, the thought of starting a union has been brought to a more serious light.
    That being said, I have completely no idea how this works. The company deals with the rental/sales/repair of musical instruments. While we do have a number of licensed brass, woodwind, and string repairmen, not everyone has such a specific skill set. A few people do cleaning/preparation of instruments along with working in the shipping department as well as other general office duties. I wasn't sure if this mattered.
    The reason the thought of a union has been considered is that the warehouse manager left within the last year, and the person hired as the new "manager" received that position as sort of a secondary title. He was hired as a luthier, but was told he had to also assume the job of manager. Knowing that situation, we have tried to keep it as easy as possible for him. The problem is he doesn't seem to want to voice his opinion to the owners. He is great, but won't make a strong enough point to them.
    The two most recent issues (in a long list) were first, in our company policy handbook, we were supposed to have performance evaluations each February. When this was brought to their attention that it is now March and there hasn't even been a mention, they said they would add an addendum to reconcile this. Still, no word. Then today, a memo was handed out that operating hours would be from 8am-5pm. Currently the business opens at 7am because there are a number of people commuting at least 30 minutes (up to over an hour) at that hour in the morning. Now pushing back the opening an hour would cause complete havoc for a commute. Once again, I realize it's a "this is not fair, but legal", but we wanted to know how we can make ourselves heard. Some workers spoke about walking out one day, but a coworker and I tried to convince them that it may not be the most logical choice at this point.
    I was just wondering what sort of recommendations I may be able to find here and see how we can get ourselves heard before it gets worse.

    p.s. I have actually found another job, but I want to help out my coworkers as much as possible. Though I'm only in my mid-20s, I've worked there longer than the majority of the people so I'd like to make sure people are treated fairly.

  • #2
    If you and your co-workers are serious you need to contact a union and speak to one of their business agents. NOT the whole group, just a small "core" group of strong supporters. If you get everyone involved at this stage the company will find out and then all hell breaks loose......

    Most of what you posted as far as "reasons" do fall into the category of "unfair, but legal" (including the "gutless" manager...which a contract would have a tough time fixing)

    As far as your co-workers thinking about walking out, IMHO that would be a major mistake at this point......to walk out without a CBA and a valid/legal reason is also known as.....quitting

    good luck

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    • #3
      Though I always say this, thanks so much for all the info. I was planning on asking for some more direction, but that was pretty perfectly covered. I really hope I can help out my coworkers to get some stuff a little bit better.

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