Report

Pre-Majority Unionism

Models for Building a Union When There's No Clear Path to a Majority or a Contract

Building a union is always hard work. But in certain workplaces, the task of winning union certification and a contract may not be viable for many years to come. Workers in those jobs may feel they have no options, but in reality there are age-old models of unionism they can pursue.

We’re calling this type of organizing “pre-majority unionism,” and we’re dedicating a whole section of the EWOC website to it.

Section 7 rights refer to the rights that workers in the private sector have to organize collectively. It’s part of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), which only applies to the private sector. 

The main advantage to pre-majority unionism is the most important one of all: when it’s the only type of unionism available, pre-majority unionism is a valid, time-tested, and powerful tool that workers can pursue to win demands, fight for justice, and build the labor movement.

Analysis of historical and contemporary pre-majority unions. Regularly updated with new cases.

Get familiar with the common terms used in union organizing.

An EWOC organizer is ready to help you and your co-workers get the benefits and respect you deserve.

This report and ongoing series of case studies is written by Colette Perold and Eric Dirnbach with individual case-study contributions from a range of authors cited within. Sarah Cougill, Megan Svoboda, Carlos Bergfeld, Natalie Robbins, Pedro Bortoto, Brad Kerr, Gavin Gassmann, Wes Holing, and Stephen Crowe helped frame the project and develop the report. The authors thank Eric Blanc, Katie Romich, Mark Meinster, and the many workers and organizers we interviewed for their feedback along the way. Those workers and organizers are quoted throughout the pages that follow. All errors, of course, are our own.

If you want to discuss the pre-majority strategy, contact EWOC.