How to Join a Union In Ontario

Step 1: Contact UFCW Canada

Call or email UFCW Canada. Ask to speak with an organizer. He or she has the knowledge and experience to get your workplace unionized in a smooth and timely fashion. The organizer will also ensure your right to join the union is protected – you cannot be disciplined, discriminated against or terminated for joining the union.,


Step 2: Sign UFCW Canada Membership Cards

With the guidance of an organizer, you and your co-workers will sign UFCW Canada membership cards. The employer never sees these cards. When at least 40% of the workers in a workplace sign UFCW Canada cards, the union can apply to the Ontario Labour Relations Board for a vote. The Labour Relations Board is the neutral government body that oversees the Ontario laws that protect workers' rights to join the union.


Step 3: Vote for UFCW Canada

A vote is usually held in your workplace one week after the union applies. It is a secret ballot vote, conducted by the Labour Relations Board. All employees can vote. It doesn't matter if you are part-time or full-time - all votes count the same. When a majority vote for the union, the Labour Board will certify UFCW Canada as your legal bargaining agent and representative. From that point on, your employer must deal with your union on all your working conditions. If you have a problem at work, your union will represent you.


Step 4: Now that you have a Union

Your employer and UFCW Canada representatives (including workers from your workforce) then sit down to negotiate a collective agreement. This agreement - the union contract - sets out the wages, benefits, working conditions, job security and other rights of the workers. When your union negotiating committee – consisting of an experienced union negotiator and representatives from your workforce – reach a strong agreement with good wages and benefits, they bring it to you and your co-workers to vote on.

UFCW Canada has experienced professional negotiators who know your industry and know how to achieve improved working conditions and better wages.. We've been representing Canadian workers for over 100 years.

UFCW Canada Will Protect Your Rights Under Ontario Labour Law
Most employers would rather not have their employees represented by a union. But the choice is not theirs to make. Under Ontario labour law, your employer cannot interfere with your decision to join a union. Employers can talk about the union generally but are forbidden from making any promises or threats, or to do anything that might prevent employees from making a free decision.

If your employer breaks the law, UFCW Canada can take legal steps to enforce your rights.

What are you waiting for?

If you think you need a union, you probably do. UFCW Canada is one of Canada's largest and most respected unions. A better life for you and your co-workers is just a phone call or email away.