Please note the article below was written a number of years ago, and the misuse of trade union time and money continues...SJG.
“…the CLC does not allow members of one union to leave and join another. A union member is like an indentured servant.”
Buzz Hargrove, president CAW, page 201 in his book “Labor of Love”
In Canada today union members are bound to and servants of the union. You cannot work unless you join the union and pay compulsory union dues. At one time union dues were supposed to be intended for collective bargaining. Now they are also used for collective coercion. Union members are forced into funding all kinds of special interest groups and causes with their compulsory union dues. Some of these groups are: National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC), Women's Legal Education and Action Fund (LEAF) Abortionist Morgentaler's defence fund, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) …
Note: There is a list of organizations receiving trade union time and/or money on my website at http://graysinfo.blogspot.com/2010/03/groups-organizations-and-causes-that.html See article headed: “Groups, organizations and causes that have received union time and/or money.”
The union bosses excuse for the misuse of their members dues is that all these non work issues are decided democratically at conventions. Yet unions are funded by compulsion, so how can you have compulsory democracy? Millions of dollars have been given to the NDP over the years by the union bosses. But, now the federal government funds all political parties according to the number of votes the parties received in the last election. This now means there are lots more compulsory union dues money available for all the special interest groups that unions support. Surely this money would be better off in the hands of laid off union members? After all it is THEIR money. Obviously union dues are to high and union members are paying union bosses to much money when these bosses can be involved in so many non-work related issues.
In fact, one might say that if any other organizations in Canada were using their memberships funds in the way that many trade unions are doing, charges would be laid. Union members have never been individually polled as to whether they want to support all these non work issues. A politically correct few impose their views on the whole membership. A good example of this is the huge amounts of compulsory union dues handed over to the NDP without consulting ALL the union membership.
"There is not a single union in Canada that can claim a mandate from its rank-and- file members for continued financial and political support for the NDP.”
Buzz Hargrove, Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) union president, quoted in Vancouver Province, June 13, 2002, page A20.
Brother Buzz states unions have no mandate for giving away all the millions of dollars handed over to the NDP. Then why are the political and judicial authorities not laying charges over the misuse of union funds? Are trade unions a protected species and above the law? I believe it would be a real eye opener to union members across Canada if ALL the union books were opened up and the membership could see all the names, causes and organizations receiving union funding. In fact if the politicians had any guts they would hold an inquiry into where all the union memberships funds are going. But don’t hold your breath on that happening for union bosses appear to be even more powerful than our elected representatives. In fact union boss Buzz Hargrove gets some of the credit for the recent Federal Liberal/NDP budget. “Martin actually tried to tell his caucus last night the budget represented their ideas and vision -- when he knows full well it was concocted in a hotel room with the NDP and union leader Buzz Hargrove….” (Editorial, Toronto Sun, May 20, 2005.)
If this statement by the Toronto Sun is correct then not only are union members ‘indentured servants’ but the Prime Minister and the leader of the NDP appear to be captive to the union agenda as well.
Stephen J. Gray
August 5, 2005.