The economy is changing. Freelance, part-time and contract work is becoming more and more common, but that doesn’t mean jobs shouldn’t come with rights and benefits though.
Unifor's Community Chapters are a new way that workers can have some of the benefits of a union, even if you don’t work somewhere that has a union or can form one.
This includes people who do not have a direct employer-employee relationship – such as freelancers, contract workers or others who do not have a traditional employment relationship.
Potential community chapters could also include workers in workplaces where unionizing campaigns have not yet succeeded; workers in precarious jobs; unemployed workers; students and any other group of workers hoping to improve their economic and social conditions.
Keep reading to find out if joining or forming a community chapter is a good option for you.
Health and Dental Plans
Having access to health and dental coverage is an important part of improving our working and living conditions. Unfortunately, many people do not have access to benefits as part of their employment. By working together in a community chapter, groups of workers can gain access to a selection of benefits plan for themselves and their families.
These plans are offered by Green Shield Canada. There are six different plans that vary in benefits and cost.
These plans are available to members of a Unifor community chapter who have committed to membership for at least one full year.
To see plan details, click here.
Group Home and Auto Insurance
Unifor members benefit from exclusive discounts with Breckles Insurance Providers. Community chapter members can save 15% on group home insurance and 10% on auto insurance when they bundle the deals.
To get a quote or to get more information, visit Unifor Insurance
Dues collected from community chapter are not kept by the union, and go back 100% to the community chapter to help with the implementation of their plan of action.
Members can chose to pay their dues by direct debit or by cheque.
Unifor has a wide network of elected leadership and rank-and-file members that ensure a voice for Unifor's members in all sectors – including those in community chapters. Unifor's strength and voice in the political sphere can be an asset.
Meet some of the national leadership here
Support from Strong Local Unions
Community chapters are associated with existing Unifor local unions. Local unions can be of great help for:
- Knowledge of employment standards and other applicable legislation
- Health and safety training and rights under the law
- Access to space, information and other local union resources
- Connection to area resources as needed
Current Community Chapters
The Canadian Freelance Union
The Canadian Freelance Union (CFU), represents self-employed media and communications workers. The CFU has an elected national executive consisting of a president, a vice-president, and five regional representatives. The CFU currently represents over 350 members who work as freelance media workers, graphic designers, photographers, illustrators, editors, authors, writers, public relations practitioners, I.T. workers, owner-operators, freelance translators and more.
More information can be found directly on the CFU's website (www.canadianfreelanceunion.ca). New members can sign up directly on the website.
Unifaith represents ministers and other workers employed by the United Church of Canada. Members of this chapter cannot formally organize but wish to work together as a chapter to advocate for common goals. As it grows in membership across Canada it will support its members so they have a collective voice to advocate for job security, advocacy in the face of disciplinary procedures, professional development, and the right to negotiate their own collective employment agreement.
More information can be found directly on Unifaith's website (http://www.unifaith.ca/).