Better In a Trade Union Campaign

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions has launched a nationwide campaign Better in a Trade Union, the main focus of which, is to promote the values and benefits of trade union membership.

The CWU has played a key role in developing the campaign and bringing this critical initiative to fruition. In our Shaping the Future Union strategic plan we placed organising and recruitment central to the future of the trade union movement. As a leading private sector union within the Irish Congress of Trade Unions, the CWU understands both the challenges and opportunities presented by the large number of workers who don’t yet enjoy the benefits of trade union membership.

Investing in our future, attracting new members, thereby maximising our influence can only be achieved by providing workers the confidence that we will be at their side in representing their interests.

Featuring public and private sector workers from across the island of Ireland, the Better in a Trade Union campaign highlights union benefits such as enhanced job security, advice and support, improved terms and conditions of employment, and better pay.

It is a fact, workers are better in a trade union and there is a cohort of young workers, in particular, with a growing awareness of the need to have someone in their corner, fighting for employment protections, better pay and improved working conditions. Working with our affiliates UNI Global and ICTU, the CWU works extensively to improve conditions for all workers, lobbying for improved employment laws and leave entitlements. Through our involvement on the Low Pay Commission, we have been instrumental in advancing pay levels toward a living wage.

However, in Ireland, private sector workers can face opposition from their employers when they seek to form or join a union. The campaign aims to shine a spotlight on the fact that, in Ireland, unlike in the majority of EU countries, employers can exercise a veto over their workers accessing unions and collective bargaining.

Despite these challenges, workers continue to join unions across the country and the Better in a Trade Union campaign, via the website, invites workers to find the right union for them. This national recruitment drive will give workers the opportunity to have a real say in their employment.

Now is the time for collective bargaining.

The Irish Government is obliged to transpose the Adequate Minimum Wages Directive this November. Owen Reidy, General Secretary of the ICTU said: “It will be the responsibility of this Government, and the Government to follow over the coming year, to fulfil Ireland’s obligations to deliver the EU Adequate Minimum Wages Directive. This will improve living standards and working conditions, but, crucially, it will also promote collective bargaining as a means to wage setting. This is the most significant and progressive legislation to emerge from the EU in a generation.”

Get involved!

The campaign, starting today, will be building up to Ireland’s first ever Trade Union Week, with activities taking place in workplaces and local communities between Monday, 29th April and Friday, 3rd May, including information stalls and social events, activities in schools, colleges and universities, and public talks, table quizzes and film screenings.

The Better in a Trade Union campaign is our call to all workers to get involved. We are requesting all Branches and members to engage with the campaign and keep up to date with CWU activities featured across our various social media platforms and at Your input and participation is requested and if you have content, pictures or articles of interest let us know and we can feature it on our website and social media channels.

You can visit to learn more about the Campaign, and check out our Testimonials from members Andrew Keehan and Adam Kavanagh below.






Better in a Trade Union Campaign Gains Momentum!

“ICTU General Secretary Owen Reidy said union members benefit from higher wages than non-unionised workers.”
The Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) has announced Ireland’s first ‘trade union week’, which it says will be the largest mobilisation of trade union members in decades.
Read full article on
Better In a Trade Union! 
Care Day 2024 is being marked today, Friday 16th, which acknowledges the importance of care in both our communities and in our lives. Today we celebrate the wonderful children of Kolbe Special School Portlaoise and we support and value those in caring roles.



#cwuireland #BetterInATradeUnion #careday2024 #kolbespecialschool

Delighted Evan with Kate Steed, Vice Principal of Kolbe Special School, in Bus donated by CWU Ireland.  Good man Evan!

Love Unions, Love CWU!



#WorldDayofSocialJustice #cwuireland #joinCWU #BetterInATradeUnion