Organizing Tip of the Week: Talk to at Least One Person Each Day About the Union
One of the best ways to get the word out about your Local is to talk face-to-face with people in your bargaining unit who are not yet members. This may seem obvious, but people are the most likely to join when they are approached by someone who is already a member and understands the benefits of being in the union. They are also more likely to join if they understand what the Union is doing on their behalf.
We encourage local officers and representatives to use official time to discuss representational matters with employees. This includes all topics covered by the CBA as well as any other matters affecting the working conditions of employees, such as furloughs, pay freezes, and issues that the union is advocating for to Congress. It is normal that most employees want to see what the union is doing on their behalf before joining. Hands down, the most effective way of doing this is talking face-to-face.
If the employee likes the Union’s representational activities, the actual membership solicitation may only take a couple of minutes. Union officials and members should not solicit membership, including providing an employee with an 1187, on official time. Nor should employees be solicited while conducting normal work duties. But as long as both are on breaks or off-duty, preferably in a non-work area, the Agency may not prevent such solicitation.
Distributing literature such as the Federal Employee newsletter and NFFE flyers to employees in break rooms will enhance Local visibility, and provide good opportunities to discuss the union with co-workers. Bargaining unit employees, members, and union officials often wear union buttons, lanyards and other paraphernalia in both work and non-work areas, as long as it does not constitute a safety hazard. This makes you easier to identify and more approachable to those who are interested in learning more about the union.
So make it your goal to bring up your Local in one conversation a day. This will enhance your Local’s visibility and bring in new members. If you need any materials, legislative literature or paraphernalia, please contact your National Organizing Coordinator (see map below).
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