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Employment law guide

Trade Union Recognition

A Trade Union may make a request for recognition to an employer who employs 21 or more workers. The employer can respond within 10 working days but if he fails to do so this will have the same effect as refusal to recognise the Union, and the Union can make a formal application for compulsory recognition to a Government body called the Central Arbitration Committee.

The Union must have 10 per cent membership in the bargaining unit it wants to represent and must show that the majority of workers would be likely to favour recognition. The procedure for dealing with an application is complex.