Management legally offering union, what does that mean?

  1. I've been on my unit for 2 months. I've made several major errors that put me on management's radar. My manager called me into the office and said legally, he must offer me a chance to join my organization's nursing union. I'm not terminated but legally it must be offered to me. What does this mean? Should I join or not join the union? He said I must come up with a decision by tomorrow/
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from Coumarin
    I've been on my unit for 2 months. I've made several major errors that put me on management's radar. My manager called me into the office and said legally, he must offer me a chance to join my organization's nursing union. I'm not terminated but legally it must be offered to me. What does this mean? Should I join or not join the union? He said I must come up with a decision by tomorrow/
    If you join the union, there are some protections in place re: the disciplinary process. For example, you may be allowed to have a union representative with you in any disciplinary meetings. My husband used to be that union representative, and he became quite skilled at negotiating fair outcomes for employees who acknowledged their mistakes and had a plan to do better. He met with the employee before the meeting to get their side of the story and plan a strategy. He knew all of the nurse managers and HR representatives, so he was usually pretty spot-on about what each of them was most concerned with and wanted to accomplish in a meeting. He was a support for the employee -- we got lots of late night phone calls from nurses who were stressing out over an upcoming disciplinary meeting.

    I've never heard of someone being given the opportunity to join the union because they'd made a bunch of mistakes, but I'll ask my husband about it when he comes home.

    If were me, I'd join.
  4. by   elkpark
    Quote from Ruby Vee
    If you join the union, there are some protections in place re: the disciplinary process. For example, you may be allowed to have a union representative with you in any disciplinary meetings. My husband used to be that union representative, and he became quite skilled at negotiating fair outcomes for employees who acknowledged their mistakes and had a plan to do better. He met with the employee before the meeting to get their side of the story and plan a strategy. He knew all of the nurse managers and HR representatives, so he was usually pretty spot-on about what each of them was most concerned with and wanted to accomplish in a meeting. He was a support for the employee -- we got lots of late night phone calls from nurses who were stressing out over an upcoming disciplinary meeting.

    I've never heard of someone being given the opportunity to join the union because they'd made a bunch of mistakes, but I'll ask my husband about it when he comes home.

    If were me, I'd join.
    This was my thought as well -- I'm no expert on any of this, but I would bet that the reason is because the union would provide you with representation and support through any kind of disciplinary process (y'know, like the police are required to inform you that you have a right to an attorney for any questioning).
  5. by   TriciaJ
    I find it very surprising that an employer would suggest joining the union. Either they are exceptionally kind, or it's written into the contract that they have to off this before starting any disciplinary action. In any case there would be very few reasons for not joining one's union.

    If you're a new employee who has made several errors, this might be a last chance to save your job. I'd take it.
  6. by   kaylee.
    Were you not offered to join the union during the hiring process?
  7. by   Wuzzie
    Quote from Coumarin
    I've been on my unit for 2 months. I've made several major errors that put me on management's radar. My manager called me into the office and said legally, he must offer me a chance to join my organization's nursing union. I'm not terminated but legally it must be offered to me. What does this mean? Should I join or not join the union? He said I must come up with a decision by tomorrow/
    I think it means you are on the fast-track to being terminated and they are making sure all the loopholes are closed.
  8. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from kaylee.
    Were you not offered to join the union during the hiring process?
    Sometimes it is mentioned in the hiring process and the applicant doesn't "hear" it because she/he is focusing on other aspects of the job. Or it's mentioned, but the applicant discounts it because it's a decision she/he doesn't have to make until after the third month of employment or before the second paycheck or some such.
  9. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from Wuzzie
    I think it means you are on the fast-track to being terminated and they are making sure all the loopholes are closed.
    This may well be true. But I still think a union representative might be beneficial to the OP. To the OP -- how is this working out?
  10. by   Wuzzie
    Quote from Ruby Vee
    This may well be true. But I still think a union representative might be beneficial to the OP. To the OP -- how is this working out?
    Oh I totally agree. I was just answering her question as to why they are offering it to her now.
  11. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from Wuzzie
    Oh I totally agree. I was just answering her question as to why they are offering it to her now.
    I agree -- and I'm still wondering how it's working out for the OP.
  12. by   herring_RN
    IIf I were being disciplines I would request representation by the union. You don't have to be a member. If all the staff nurses are represented and you didn't join they trill must provide you representation.
    Even for a verbal warning a nurse should be represented.

    If they are determined to terminate you the union representative can often help you fight for another chance ot negotiate voluntary resignation.
    Often when the errors are minor or exaggerated the nurse still doesn't want to stay. Being able to avoid a termination a the record can be the best outcome.

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