Recently Bates College employees along with some staff members decided to start the journey to unionize. They began to spread the word amongst colleagues and other workers who felt under paid, under appreciated, and over worked.

As of December 18th, the union election date was announced via Instagram saying Bates workers will vote to form their union in January.

January 6th, the ballots will begin to be mailed out to eligible employees and it could be as many as 630 people.

For those who do not know, a labor union is, "an organized group of workers who unite to make decisions about conditions affecting their work. Labor unions strive to bring economic justice to the workplace and social justice to our nation," according to Pacific Legal. 

According to their Instagram page, Employees of Bates and supporters of the union say its never been more clear that they need to be included in decision making.

One employee publicly posts that last year, without consulting workers, the college stopped paying into workers retirement funds. This has since been reinstated. Furthermore it has been said that, "Any democratic decision-making takes time and commitment.. It will take all of us to ensure that our union is build and sustain the workplace we all want to see."

Allegedly, struggles have taken place during the union campaign such as union bashing.

According to Cambridge, union bashing is a strong criticism of labor union. It is when a company has been accused of swaying workers into not voting yes on a union.

In a statement put out on October 12th 2021, by President Clayton Spencer, which was written in letter format to colleagues on the Bates Website said,

"As we move forward, I want to assure you that Bates will protect the rights of all eligible employees to decide for themselves whether or not they wish to be exclusively represented by this union. "

Furthermore, she states,

"The college will not, however, remain silent during this critical period, as has been urged by some faculty and other members of the community. No one can make an informed choice if they hear only one side of a story. That is simply not how deliberative processes or democratic elections work, particularly at an educational institution. "

President Clayton Spencer

The support page on Instagram for the union has asked supporters to take action and let their voices be heard.

No matter what side you are on, this is a strong example of democracy and fighting for your rights, whatever that may be and whatever side you are on.

It is with high hopes that all involved in this matter will come to a positive conclusion that is most importantly, fair.

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