Legal Article - Employment Law

Preventing Discrimination against Trade Union Membership and Non-Membership

To prevent discrimination against a person for belonging or not belonging to a Trade Union at the selection or recruitment stages the employer should ensure that application forms, employment literature, advertisements, or instructions to advertisers and employment agencies make no references to Trade Union membership or non-membership as a requirement for the job.

Similarly, all staff who may be involved in recruitment, selection, interviewing, or in contact with the public or employment agencies (e.g. receptionists, security officers, supervisors) should be informed and trained not to refer to Trade Union membership.

Only if an applicant for employment asks should an employer respond to any questions concerning Trade Unions’. When responding the Company representative should state categorically that the Company recognises the right of all employees to belong to any Trade Union of their choice, or to none.

It may be helpful to explain that the industry has a National Joint Council and a National Agreement and which Trade Unions’ are signatory to the Agreement.

Where an employer recognises a Trade Union locally, they should ensure that discrimination does not take place inadvertently by “allowing” the Union to recommend people for employment, or to “dictate” who they will work with, or should be made redundant etc.

Published: 03 Jun 2011

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