This is a contractual agreement, which is normally a clause of a union’s collective bargaining agreement. In this agreement, the employer and the trade or labor union consent on how far the union may force or insist on employees joining the union, and if the employer will collect fees on behalf of the union.

Types of union security:

  • Agency shop
  • Closed shop
  • Dues check off
  • Union shop
  • Fair share provision.

Agency shop

This is where an employer can employ anyone with either union membership status or  without it; however, an employee is not compelled to join the union, in order to secure his job. On the other hand, all employees outside the union need to pay a fee to the union in order to compensate for costs that incurred in the course of the collective bargains. This fee is called, the agency fee. Any employee, who wishes to leave the union, cannot be sacked, but has to remit the agency fee.

Closed shop

This is the variety of union security, whereby only those employees that are members of the  union, can be hired by the employer. Under its provisions, an employee, who quits the union, may be sacked equally.

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Dues check-off

This is an agreement between the employer and the union in which the employer accepts to collect the fees or other collections from the employees’ paycheck and remit the funds directly to the union, regularly. This applies to both members and non-members of the union.

Union shop

This is where the employer may hire anyone to their union notwithstanding his status, but the person must join the union within a specified time. An employee, who leaves the union, must be sacked.

Fair share provision

This is similar to the agency shop where the employer can hire anyone irrelevant  of their union status, and the employee is not forced joining with the union. However, the non-union employees need to pay a fee to the union aimed to reimburse the costs arising out of collective bargaining. This cost is named the fair share fee. An employee that leaves the union does not have to be sacked, but must pay the fair share fee.


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