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 Featured Title
Unions, Equity, and the Path to Renewal
Janice R. Foley   Patricia L. Baker  

$87.00 Hardcover
Release Date: 9/15/2009
ISBN: 978-0-7748-1680-9    

$34.95 Paperback
Release Date: 7/1/2010
ISBN: 978-0-7748-1681-6    

264 Pages


About the Book

Trade unions in Canada are losing their traditional support base, and membership numbers could sink to US levels unless unions recapture their power. Advancing equity within an increasingly diverse membership has been identified as one important step in the union renewal process. This book shows that equity within unions is not simply one path among many -- it is the path to union renewal.

Unions, Equity, and the Path to Renewal brings together a distinguished group of union activists and equity scholars to document how traditional union cultures, practices, and structures have eroded solidarity and activism and created an equity deficit in Canadian unions. Informed by a feminist vision of unions as instruments of social justice -- and by an appreciation of the decades-long effort by labour and feminist activists to build union democracy, solidarity, and strength -- the contributors propose the changes needed to encourage member participation and to reposition organized labour as a central institution in workers’ lives.

This volume highlights the central role that equity issues should play in debates on union renewal. It is mandatory reading for students, practitioners, and activists in industrial relations and labour and women’s studies or for anyone interested in the future of labour and unions in Canada and abroad.

About the Author(s)

Janice R. Foley is a professor in the Faculty of Business Administration at the University of Regina.

Patricia L. Baker was an associate professor of anthropology at Mount St. Vincent University.

Table of Contents

Figures and Tables


Introduction / Janice Foley

Part 1: The Equity Struggle -- Past and Future

1) Gendering Union Renewal: Women’s Contributions to Labour Movement Revitalization / Jan Kainer

2) Too Bad, You Were Too Late Coming In! / Marie-Josée Legault

Part 2: The Equity Struggle -- Black Trade Unionists Speak Out

3) Confronting Racism in the Canadian Labour Movement: An Intergenerational Assessment / Miriam Edelson

4) Equity in Unions: Political Correctness or Necessity for Survival? / Carol Wall

5) Are We There Yet? The Struggle for Equity in Canadian Unions / Marie Clarke Walker

Part 3: Equity, Solidarity, and Union Renewal

6) Bargaining for Economic Equality: A Path to Union Renewal, Then and Now / Anne Forrest

7) Developing a Conceptual Model of Equity Progress in Unions / Janice Foley

8) Cross-Constituency Organizing: A Vehicle for Union Renewal / Linda Briskin

Part 4: International Perspectives on Equity and Union Renewal

9) Gender Politics in Australian Unions: Gender Equity Meets the Struggle for Union Survival / Barbara Pocock and Karen Brown

10) Sites for Renewal: Women’s Activism in Male-Dominated Unions in Australia, Canada, and the United States / Mary Margaret Fonow and Suzanne Franzway

11) The Representation of Women and the Trade Union Merger Process / Anne McBride and Jeremy Waddington

12) Old Tracks, New Maps? The Meaning of Women’s Groups for Trade Union Revival in Britain / Jane Parker

List of Contributors



"This is an important book on a timely topic. It asks readers to consider pathways to renewal within the union movement as well as at its margins -- contributors illustrate that internal dynamics are as important to scrutinize as external ones. In this way, it highlights the importance of history at the same time as mapping the evolution of core debates in two areas of inquiry -- equity organizing and union renewal -- that, despite their clear relationship, are rarely bridged. Unions, Equity, and the Path to Renewal will be of great interest to scholars and students of industrial relations, labour studies, political science, and women’s studies."
-- Leah Vosko, author of Managing the Margins: Gender, Citizenship and the International Regulation of Precarious Employment

"The subject that this book takes up is critical, as trade unions are now moving away from their traditional support base -- white, working-class men. With half the female population over age fifteen working outside the home, there is a new constituency for unions. Looking at race and women in the trade union movement, Unions, Equity, and the Path to Renewal will appeal to those both inside the academy, and out."
-- Judith Haiven, author of "Union Response to Pay Equity: A Cautionary Tale," in Equity, Diversity and Canadian Labour, edited by Gerald Hunt and David Rayside

Sample Chapter

Front Matter and Chapter One

Related Topics

Women's Studies
Gender Studies
Political Science

Other Ways To Order

In Canada, order your copy of Unions, Equity, and the Path to Renewal from UTP Distribution at:

UTP Distribution
5201 Dufferin Street
Toronto, Ontario
M3H 5T8

Phone orders: 1(800)565-9523 or (416)667-7791
Fax orders: 1(800)221-9985 or (416)667-7832

Ordering information for customers outside Canada

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