In June 2007, the Supreme Court of Canada examined in detail the reasons for respecting collective bargaining as a human right. In the case of the Facilities Subsector Bargaining Association/British Columbia, the Court found that a collective agreement (CBA) is a written contract between an employer and a union representing workers. The KBA is the result of a broad negotiation process between the parties on issues such as wages, hours and terms of employment. Fox does not deny that collective bargaining involves the use of diplomatic power: its argument is that it also leads to individual negotiations. Collective bargaining is therefore really not a „problem“ but often a useful way to come together and find creative „win-win“ solutions. The right to collective bargaining is recognized by international human rights conventions. Article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights describes the ability to organize fundamental human rights unions.  Point 2 (a) of the International Labour Organization`s statement on fundamental principles and rights in the workplace defines „freedom of association and effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining“ as an essential worker`s right.  The 1948 Convention on Freedom of Association and the Protection of the Right to Organization (C087) and several other conventions protect collective bargaining in particular by creating international labour standards that deter countries from violating workers` right to co-association and collective bargaining.  Image courtesy: freemalaysiatoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/bargaining-1.jpg The Act is now included in the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 s.179, as collective agreements are definitively considered non-binding in the United Kingdom.
This presumption can be rebutted if the agreement is written and includes an express provision that it should be legally enforceable. The American Federation of Labor was founded in 1886 and provided a large number of workers with unprecedented bargaining power.  The Railway Labor Act (1926) required employers to bargain collectively with unions. Under the Labour Relations Act 2000, there are two types of employment contracts: individual employment contracts and collective agreements. The Office of Labor Management Standards, part of the U.S. Department of Labor, is required to collect all collective agreements for 1,000 or more workers, with the exception of those involving railroads and airlines.  They offer the public access to these collections through their website. Second, individual bargaining generally sets the terms and conditions in detail, whereas in collective bargaining, only the minimum conditions are set. Third, individual negotiations are essentially market activity (i.e.
buying and selling), whereas collective bargaining is essentially a political activity (a strike or lockout is really a diplomatic application of power). In Sweden, about 90% of employees are subject to collective agreements and 83% in the private sector (2017).   Collective agreements generally contain minimum wage provisions.