Know Your Rights

Weingarten Rights:

Know your rights: The Right to Representation

If you are ever called into an interview meeting with your supervisor
or manager so they can investigate a situation which might result in
discipline, you have specific representational rights. These rights are
summarized below:

1.        You have the right to have a Union representative present.

2.        If you want a Union representative there, you must ask for him or             

3.        If you do not know why your manager wants to meet            
           with you, ask him/her if it is a meeting that could result          
           in a discipline.

4.        If your manager refuses to allow you to bring a                      
           Union representative, repeat your request in front of a witness. Do         
           not refuse to attend the meeting, but do not answer             
           any questions either. Take notes. Once the meeting is           
           over call your Union representative at once.

5.        You have the right to speak privately with your Union representative      
           before the meeting and during the meeting.

6.        Your Union representative has the right to play an active role in the        
           meeting. She or he is not just a witness.

These rights are called "Weingarten Rights" based on a 1975
Supreme Court decision (NLRB vs. J. Weingarten). As with all rights,
if we do not use them we lose them.

This statement could save your job:

"If this discussion could in any way lead to my being
disciplined or terminated I respectfully request that my
steward be present at the meeting. Without representation
present, I choose not to respond to any questions or


Union members earn better wages and benefits than workers who aren’t union members. On average, union workers’ wages are 29 percent higher than their nonunion counterparts. While only 16 percent of nonunion workers have guaranteed pensions, fully 73 percent of union workers do. More than 9 out of 10 union workers have jobs that provide health insurance benefits, but fewer than 7 out of 10 nonunion workers do. Unions help employers create a more stable, productive workforce—where workers have a say in improving their jobs.