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Why do I need a union?

Smokey speaking to crowd

There are many benefits of belonging to a union.

1. Better money. Union jobs pay more – about 15 per cent more than non-unionized jobs. If money matters to you, then join a union. That’s one reason employers resist unions: they don’t want to pay their employees more.

2. Better benefits. If you want a pension, health coverage, paid vacation, paid sick leave, overtime pay and other benefits, often the only way is through a union. That’s another reason employers dislike unions: they don’t want to provide these benefits.

3. Better job security. Your boss can’t fire or demote you arbitrarily. They can’t lay you off out of sequence. Unless there’s sufficient cause, he they must promote you to the next job level when it’s your turn. Only unions can give you these protections.

4. Competence. Union workers tend to be better workers than non-union workers. Why? Mainly because jobs with better wages, benefits and working conditions attract better workers. Unions also provide educational opportunities and offer scholarships.

5. Activism. You’ll have a chance to become involved in the union in a variety of positions, such as shop steward. Workers choose the person they feel is best qualified to represent their interests.

Helpful Resources and Publications

Want to learn more about the structure of OPSEU or your constitutional right to join a union? We have downloadable resources on a number of legal issues that will equip you with the tools you need to get started.

What can OPSEU do for me?

  1. Have your pay reflect your skills, experience and contributions.

  2. Get you benefits – or better benefits.

  3. Provide you with greater job security.

  4. Protect you from being fired without reason.

  5. Ensure a safer and healthier workplace.

  6. Give you more protection from discrimination, harassment and violence.

  7. Provide more fairness and transparency in hiring and promotion.

  8. Allow you more say in the shifts and days you work.

  9. Provide education opportunities to expand your skill set.

  10. Offer opportunities to take on leadership roles.

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OPSEU Members - Organizing

Part-Time College Support Workers Campaign

Part-Time College Support Workers Campaign

A part-timer can work here for years and never get health benefits or a single sick day.

You deserve the same wages, the same benefits and the same working conditions as your full-time co-workers – and it’s possible to get them by joining OPSEU!

Discover the OPSEU Advantage

OPSEU Head Office

OPSEU is recognized as one of Canada’s most dynamic and progressive unions. With over 155,000 members, OPSEU will stand up for your rights from a position of real power.

OPSEU is one of Canada’s most dynamic and progressive unions. With over 155,000 members, OPSEU will stand up for your rights from a position of real power.

OPSEU’s staff includes specialists in bargaining, grievance handling, pensions, benefits, health and safety, pay equity, human rights, communications, campaigns, education, research and organizing.

Further, OPSEU is one of the most democratic unions. As a member, you have a big say in how your union works for you. You elect your union reps and are encouraged to run for leadership positions.

We offer extensive training opportunities at no cost. Choices range from full weekends to three-hour courses to online learning. We also provide annual scholarships to members and/or their dependants.

OPSEU membership comes with dues that are among the very lowest in the country. We do more for you – for less.  In addition, OPSEU offers attractive discounts on things like insurance, wireless service, travel, and entrance to the Royal Ontario Museum and the Ontario Science Centre.

Membership has its benefits, and no union gives you as many as OPSEU!

If you’d like to ask a question or find out more about becoming an OPSEU member, please send us an email. OPSEU organizers are here to help!  If you are looking for your union number, please do not use this form. Please contact your regional office here

If you have a question that you’d like discuss with an organizer, don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’d be happy to hear from you! 

1-844-OPSEU 4 U (1-844-677-3848)

We’re always delighted to receive mail. Use the address below – and don’t forget to include a return address and/or phone number so we can get back to you!

2550 Victoria Park Ave., Suite 400,
Toronto, ON
M2J 5A9


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