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Old 05-17-2014, 11:18 AM   #126
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First off, where I work, I am a part of a Union.

Unions are suppose to provide a safe work environment and fair wages. Now that is said, take it with a grain of salt. What is deemed a fair wage is between Union and Employer.

It is always great when there is a new agreement and employees gets raises but give it a year or two, these wages are considered shit again by the employees just because other Unions have better deals. The Union will never work for everybody.

I understand that this Union at IKEA only have 35 employees. It is not a big number at all so the Union's leverage might not be high at all. But it is still the duty of the Union to provide fair wages.

What I don't understand is why is only Richmond's IKEA unionized and not the others. If they unionized across the board, things would have been more different.

Unions have pros and cons just like non-unionized have pros and cons. To out right slander Unions is not right in my books. Trust me, I am not biased here. I see the pros and cons of each side. But I firmly believe being in a Union is a great thing.
I have had union jobs in the past, and to be honest, most of the people on here that slander unions are ignorant and just not aware of the many reasons why unions are a necessity or why they exist. you really have to think big picture.


to break it down:

- unions essentially are the reason we have and will help keep western living standards. they are responsible for your regular "40 hour" work week, weekends, overtime and such benefits that we take for granted today.
- this isnt a third world country where we should all be working in sweatshop conditions.
- companies will try to maximize profits, they will try to have employees work as long as possible, and for as cheap as possible. they will do everything they can do to lower wages, ie. "mcdonalds and tim hortons hiring temporary foreign workers, even in major urban areas."
- some companies essentially want to promote the, "if you wont do it, we will just get the next guy in line" mentality.

- countries like germany are heavily unionized and yet they are successful. They have good wages for trades like welders and such.

The drawbacks

I will admit the problems with unions in today's age is that they are protecting their weak employees. You see many instances where their employee messes up but they get suspended with pay. (ie. police officers, or bad teachers that cant seem to get fired). This is one of their major faults.

It know it depends on the industry, but most of today's unions are not as seniority based as before. And to say that all union employees are weak and lazy is downright stupid. It's really difficult to get hired into union or government jobs, often with tonnes of qualifications required. If you are the type that can go to university and or trades to get these qualifications, you have to have some type of ambition. Many of these employees want to get promoted, and thus will work hard. From my experiences, there are many super bright workers that work extremely hard and probably offset those weak employees that cant and should get fired.

Also on the other argument that union workers are entitled?

I think as a citizen of a western country we are entitled to have proper working conditions and get paid decent wages.

Why should everyone be working 60 + hours a week and weekends and get paid peanuts for it. It seems like we are now in a race to the bottom, where everyone has to work longer hours and get paid less and less. and if you are against this, then you are ENTITLED!

Like I said in other threads, I hate unions, but they are a necessity because I dont want my kids living in a world where it's a race to the bottom.
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Old 05-17-2014, 11:20 AM   #127
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I understand that this Union at IKEA only have 35 employees. It is not a big number at all so the Union's leverage might not be high at all. But it is still the duty of the Union to provide fair wages.
I'm not sure if your numbers are right. Most news reports I've seen mention that the number of Richmond IKEA employees on strike is about 350.
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:18 PM   #128
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Like I said in other threads, I hate unions, but they are a necessity because I dont want my kids living in a world where it's a race to the bottom.
Here's the thing: in much of Western culture at least, many of the plusses you list for unions are no longer concerns. Perfect example: "they are responsible for your regular "40 hour" work week, weekends, overtime and such benefits that we take for granted today." - yes, union efforts may have helped give workers the power to bring these things about... these days though, they're entrenched in employment law, so saying that unions are still necessary to maintain them is a bit much.

I used to work at a company (non-union) where they tried to screw us on things like overtime, and a quick call to Employment Standards straightened them right out every time they'd try to push the limits. In fact, it was arguably more effective than a union would have been, because there's no butting heads with government legislation - with a union, they may have been able to fight it off even to the point of initiating job action, but when ESB calls up and says, "pay them out, motherfucker," you just do it.
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:23 PM   #129
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Here's the thing: in much of Western culture at least, many of the plusses you list for unions are no longer concerns. Perfect example: "they are responsible for your regular "40 hour" work week, weekends, overtime and such benefits that we take for granted today." - yes, union efforts may have helped give workers the power to bring these things about... these days though, they're entrenched in employment law, so saying that unions are still necessary to maintain them is a bit much.

I used to work at a company (non-union) where they tried to screw us on things like overtime, and a quick call to Employment Standards straightened them right out every time they'd try to push the limits. In fact, it was arguably more effective than a union would have been, because there's no butting heads with government legislation - with a union, they may have been able to fight it off even to the point of initiating job action, but when ESB calls up and says, "pay them out, motherfucker," you just do it.
And then the next day, they find out who complained to the ESB and fires them.

Oh sorry, no union to protect you.
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:50 PM   #130
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And then the next day, they find out who complained to the ESB and fires them.

Oh sorry, no union to protect you.
yup, try telling your boss in a non-union company that you no longer want to work 60 + hours a week, see how that turns out.

I've seen it before. Person wants to spend more time with their family. they go home at 6pm (they were suppose to be off at 5) while others stay later. they are deemed "unproductive" or "lazy". I've seen the company give them severance packages (the legal way of firing people without cause). They hire the next guy who hears about the last guy and no one dares complains.

Also it creates a culture where working 60 + hours is the standard and norm. so when they hear about their union friends working "regular" 40 hours, they think they are lazy slackers.
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Old 05-17-2014, 12:52 PM   #131
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dont get me wrong, there are some great companies where you have deadlines, and targets, and working late to meet those goals will require working longer hours, and those companies tend to reward the employees through generous bonuses.

But more often than not, it seems like working 60 + hours a week is the norm, and the bonuses and pay are peanuts. and it does seem like a race to the bottom.
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Old 05-17-2014, 01:01 PM   #132
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And then the next day, they find out who complained to the ESB and fires them.

Oh sorry, no union to protect you.
Yeah, Employment Standards law also includes sections on wrongful dismissal. And again, legal smackdown can have far worse implications than union smackdown for an employer.
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Old 05-17-2014, 01:30 PM   #133
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Yeah, Employment Standards law also includes sections on wrongful dismissal. And again, legal smackdown can have far worse implications than union smackdown for an employer.
You forgot the part where employers can fire you without just cause by serving you notice and giving you severance pay.
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Old 05-17-2014, 04:37 PM   #134
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Unions can be good and bad.

My dad used to work for a company where the workers were trying to start an union, so half of the employees went on strike the other half didn't. My dad did not go on strike and continue working for the company. They were not successful in creating the union and most if not all of the people who striked were let go.

But now my dad is having health problems and the company who he stood up for during the union period now turned their back on him and said too bad you either quit or suck it up, they have no sympathy as they can see he is having health problem as his weight loss was very obvious and he was in the hospital for awhile, instead of helping him they pretty much pressured him out. In the end he did quit and went on long term disability with the government. But there was no severance package or any sort of benefit from the company.

Looking back if the union was establish, his career may have turn out differently.
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Old 05-17-2014, 07:05 PM   #135
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You forgot the part where employers can fire you without just cause by serving you notice and giving you severance pay.
But really, if your employer is willing to go that route, would you want to be stuck working with that company anyway?

I've been a part of three different unions (UFCW 247, IATSE 669 and IATSE 891) and they all have had their pro's and con's. The latter two definitely don't help out the weak members as most local film crews tend to talk to one another about who worked well and who managed to ruin an entire day's worth of work by dumping the film canisters into a lake. I personally have no issues with those two. UFCW 247 I personally don't like, but that was more due to a personal issue I had when I was on medical leave after a surgery and my shop steward did shit all to help me out after my employer decided to let me go without just cause. Even in arbitration, though I followed everything to the letter of the law and the Union rules, the steward twisted a bunch of facts and managed to screw me over. Also, the same union also protected an old co-worker who was purposely contaminating a bunch of meat in the warehouse where I had worked. They had to catch him in the act three fucking times before the union was willing to let him go.
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Old 05-18-2014, 04:06 AM   #136
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I'm not sure if your numbers are right. Most news reports I've seen mention that the number of Richmond IKEA employees on strike is about 350.
sorry, you are correct. i mixed my numbers with the ones that were expelled.
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Old 10-22-2014, 03:30 PM   #137
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IKEA Richmond strike has finally been resolved
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Old 10-22-2014, 03:44 PM   #138
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Lol my work considers Vancity Buzz social media. so I can't look at it...
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Old 10-22-2014, 03:53 PM   #139
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Old 10-22-2014, 04:00 PM   #140
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Lol my work considers Vancity Buzz social media. so I can't look at it...
your work is thinking too highly of it
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Old 10-22-2014, 04:14 PM   #141
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Old 10-22-2014, 05:05 PM   #142
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From the VanCity Buzz article, it seems like Ready sided more with IKEA than with the union, and that's how his binding arbitration results came out.

Can anyone confirm with another source on what the settlement deal is like?
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Old 10-22-2014, 06:08 PM   #143
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Unions can be good and bad.

My dad used to work for a company where the workers were trying to start an union, so half of the employees went on strike the other half didn't. My dad did not go on strike and continue working for the company. They were not successful in creating the union and most if not all of the people who striked were let go.

But now my dad is having health problems and the company who he stood up for during the union period now turned their back on him and said too bad you either quit or suck it up, they have no sympathy as they can see he is having health problem as his weight loss was very obvious and he was in the hospital for awhile, instead of helping him they pretty much pressured him out. In the end he did quit and went on long term disability with the government. But there was no severance package or any sort of benefit from the company.

Looking back if the union was establish, his career may have turn out differently.


it's been a few years since I've taken a labour relations class, but I thought that you can't just walk out and strike unless you have already formed a union. And even then, you can't just walk out whenever you want (ie. wildcat strike) unless it was union sanctioned and approved, etc....
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Old 10-22-2014, 09:05 PM   #144
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i kind of gotten used to the coquitlam location. i think i may continue to go there instead.
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I agreed that it was wrong of the union to demand that workers who crossed the picket line (to feed themselves/their families) should be fired. Fairly ridiculous IMO. Not everyone can afford to not work for 527 days...

and FINALLY, back to normal hours and food services!
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Old 10-22-2014, 09:53 PM   #146
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thank goodness the restaurant is open again.
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Old 10-22-2014, 10:36 PM   #147
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i kind of gotten used to the coquitlam location. i think i may continue to go there instead.
Where do you live?
For most people, Coquitlam is way too far.
Besides, the IKEA in richmond is brand new.
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:02 AM   #148
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Curious how the ex-strikers will treat the workers who crossed the picket line when everyone is back to work. Hope management will keep an eye on workplace bullying and immediately fire people who harasses anyone
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:49 AM   #149
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can you even fire a union worker for that?

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Where do you live?
For most people, Coquitlam is way too far.
Besides, the IKEA in richmond is brand new.
east van by joyce & kingsway. coquitlam is a little of a trek, but i think they have decent facilities (and i don't have to go to richmond). plus i didn't like how the union handled things so if there's an opportunity to support the coquitlam location i would.
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:55 AM   #150
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it's been a few years since I've taken a labour relations class, but I thought that you can't just walk out and strike unless you have already formed a union. And even then, you can't just walk out whenever you want (ie. wildcat strike) unless it was union sanctioned and approved, etc....
It wasn't a government job or anything it was a private company so the workers can do whatever. the company just stop paying them and at the end they all lost their jobs because the union failed
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