What if our union takes a strike vote, and does your vote mean?
Strike Authorization vote is called for by union leadership. All members in the bargaining unit are given notice of where and when the strike vote will take place. Only members in good standing can vote (good standing meaning, all union dues are paid to date). Strike action is the main weapon the union has against employers. When negotiations breakdown and employer rejects the workers and union's demands.
The strike authorization given by the membership will make the employer continue to negotiate, or give permission to union leadership to call for a strike. Last February, during Stop & Shop's negotiations with New England UFCW Locals, Stop & Shop hired 'SCAB' workers to threaten UFCW members during negotiations. With tactics like these we cannot take negotiations or this process lightly.
Put it simple: It is critical for all union members to become active all-the-time, not just during contract negotiations. Our strength to earn a good contract, retain benefits and secure a better livelihood for ourselves and our families, depends on us unconditionally banding together.