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The Nature of Union Raiding: Evidence from British Columbia, 1978–1998

Advances in Industrial & Labor Relations

ISBN: 978-0-76231-386-0, eISBN: 978-1-84950-470-6

Publication date: 1 January 2006


A certification attempt involving an incumbent union is known as a raid. Very little is known about union raiding, yet a large number of workers are affected by raiding and unions continue to debate the process. This paper tests various hypotheses of the nature of union raiding using unique data on raiding attempts over the 1978–1998 period in the Canadian province of British Columbia. The principal findings are (1) raiding attempts are much more likely to succeed when the incumbent union has underachieved in collective bargaining, and are often used in such circumstances; (2) employers favor the incumbent union, are effective in influencing the outcome, but use very different tactics than in regular certification; (3) independent unions fare better in raid contests relative to the national and international unions; and (4) there is a modest amount of inter-affiliation raiding, but much of this is between AFL–CIO affiliates who apparently disregard their no-raiding agreements when operating in Canada.


Riddell, C. (2006), "The Nature of Union Raiding: Evidence from British Columbia, 1978–1998", Lewin, D. and Kaufman, B.E. (Ed.) Advances in Industrial & Labor Relations (Advances in Industrial & Labor Relations, Vol. 15), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 269-293.



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