ORGANIZING CHALLENGES FOR TEMP WORKERS
The system of temp agency employment can make it harder for temp workers to organize.
But, this hasn't stopped them. Unions and temps have worked together to exercise their rights, grow union membership, and improve conditions for everyone in their workplaces.
Corporations use temp workers to divide workforces, intentionally pitting temp workers against union members, and union members against temps. In non-union shops it is direct employees and temps against each other. It's part of a mostly successful strategy that weakens worker power. Breaking the cycle of degraded conditions takes unions, direct employees, and temp workers organizing together.
Temp Worker Justice helps temp workers and unions with research, on-the-ground organizing, and strategic support.
Formerly "temporary" workers at Ford supplier Detroit Chassis in Avon, OH celebrate their victory and recognition as United Autoworkers.
A group of 60 auto workers had enough of being permanently temporary. The produced a key element for Ford trucks and knew if they stuck together, they could win better pay and job security. Making between $9.50-$11.50/hr was well below what they deserved. The temp workers scheduled a strike and demanded that their employer bargain with the United Autoworkers as their representative. Just before they went on strike, their demands were met!
Temporary Workers of America
Microsoft employs thousands of temporary workers both on and off its main campus, like many other large tech companies. A small group of permatemps working to test foreign language apps, led by Philippe Boucher, organized for well-deserved benefits. Coming from other countries with greater employment protections, some couldn't believe that after years of loyalty they weren't entitled to even 1 sick day. The Temporary Workers of America was officially incorporated in 2014 with 38 members, winning an NLRB election and the right to bargain with temp agency Lionbridge Technologies Inc.. It was the first known independent union created entirely by temporary workers.
UNION ORGANIZING RESOURCES & STRATEGY
Union members interested in resources & strategy should contact us with questions and requests: