Why Join a Union

Do you question the benefits of being a union member?

Unions have a beneficial efffect to employees on the basic power relationship at the workplace. Without a union, employers have nearly all the rights. As long as certain laws are not violated, the can change employees pay and working conditions at any time. Furthermore, any benefits employees receive are at the discretion of the employer.

Employees under a Union are protected from the employer make changes in the working conditions unless they are negotiated with the employees union members. Any benefits or working conditions covered by the contract (Collective Bargaining Agreement) are protected by law.

When employees negotiate a contract, they collectively decide what could be improved at the work site and make proposals to the employer. The employer is legally obligated to negotiate most proposals that affect the quality of employees working conditions. Whats more, unions give you strength in numbers.

Unions provide:

  • Higher Wages
  • Better Health Care
  • Guaranteed Pensions
  • More Vacation
  • Unions Narrow Race and Gender Wage Gaps

And beyond that, Unions also Raise Everyone’s Living Standards.

Higher Wages - Union workers earn 29% more than non-union workers. 

Guaranteed Pensions - 73% Union members have a defined benefit pension (16% of nonunion workers have this type of retirement security).


Better Health Benefits - Union members are 35% more likely to have access to health insurance benefits through their jobs than non-union workers. 

More Vacation - Union members enjoy an average of 3 extra days of vacation each year. 

Unions Raise Everyone’s Living Standards

Comparing the 10 states with the highest union density (New York, Hawaii, Alaska, Michigan, New Jersey, Washington, Illinois, Rhode Island, Ohio, and Minnesota) with the 10 weakest (North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Texas, Mississippi, Arizona, South Dakota, Arkansas, Florida, and Utah).
  • In the 10 strongest union states there is less poverty;
  • In the 10 strongest union states there is a higher household income;
  • In the 10 weakest union states 16% of the population are without health insurance;
  • Strong union states also allocate more money to public education.

Don't be misled by cooperate union-busting dis-information.  Higher worker wages lead to more demand, which leads to a stronger economy.  Unions are good for workers, and a strong American economy.

If you work with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife and are not a member of a union (or are member of a different WDFW Union), but would like to join WAFWP, download the "Showing of Interest Form" and submit it to our Treasurer.