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Trade Unions and Family Friendly Policies in Britain


  • John W. Budd


  • Karen Mumford



This paper uses linked data on over 1,500 workplaces and 20,000 individuals from the 1998 British Workplace Employee Relations Survey to analyze the relationship between labor unions and the availability of six employer-provided family-friendly policies. Unions appear to help with work-family issues by increasing the availability of parental leave and job sharing options through a combination of negotiating for additional benefits and providing better information about existing policies. There is also a negative association between union membership and the availability of working at home options and, for parents of young children, childcare subsidies.

Suggested Citation

  • John W. Budd & Karen Mumford, "undated". "Trade Unions and Family Friendly Policies in Britain," Working Papers 0302, Human Resources and Labor Studies, University of Minnesota (Twin Cities Campus).
  • Handle: RePEc:hrr:papers:0302

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alison L. Booth & Mark L. Bryan, 2004. "The Union Membership Wage-Premium Puzzle: Is There a Free Rider Problem?," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 57(3), pages 402-421, April.
    2. Budd, John W & Na, In-Gang, 2000. "The Union Membership Wage Premium for Employees Covered by Collective Bargaining Agreements," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(4), pages 783-807, October.
    3. Richard B. Freeman, 1981. "The Effect of Unionism on Fringe Benefits," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 34(4), pages 489-509, July.
    4. Andrew K. G. Hildreth, 2000. "Union Wage Differentials for Covered Members and Nonmembers in Great Britain," Journal of Labor Research, Transaction Publishers, vol. 21(1), pages 133-147, January.
    5. Robert Drago & David Costanza & Robert Caplan & Tanya Brubaker & Darnell Cloud & Naomi Harris & Russell Kashian & T. Lynn Riggs, 2001. "The Willingness-to-Pay for Work/Family Policies: A Study of Teachers," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 55(1), pages 22-41, October.
    6. Waldfogel, Jane, 1998. "The Family Gap for Young Women in the United States and Britain: Can Maternity Leave Make a Difference?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(3), pages 505-545, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Haile, Getinet & Bryson, Alex & White, Michael, 2015. "Spillover effects of unionisation on non-members' wellbeing," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 108-122.
    2. Salomé Goñi-Legaz & Andrea Ollo-López, 2015. "Factors that Determine the Use of Flexible Work Arrangement Practices in Spain," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 36(3), pages 463-476, September.
    3. Kato, Takao & Kodama, Naomi, 2015. "Work-Life Balance Practices, Performance-Related Pay, and Gender Equality in the Workplace: Evidence from Japan," IZA Discussion Papers 9379, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Heywood, John S. & Siebert, W. Stanley & Wei, Xiangdong, 2005. "High Performance Workplaces and Family Friendly Practices: Promises Made and Promises Kept," IZA Discussion Papers 1812, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Heywood, John S. & Siebert, W. Stanley & Wei, Xiangdong, 2005. "The Implicit Costs and Benefits of Family Friendly Work Practices," IZA Discussion Papers 1581, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Dr Alex Bryson & John Forth, 2010. "Trade Union Membership and Influence 1999-2009," National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) Discussion Papers 362, National Institute of Economic and Social Research.
    7. Alex Bryson & P Willman, 2007. "Union Organization in Great Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0774, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    8. John W. Budd, 2010. "Does Employee Ignorance Undermine Shared Capitalism?," NBER Chapters,in: Shared Capitalism at Work: Employee Ownership, Profit and Gain Sharing, and Broad-based Stock Options, pages 291-316 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Benjamin Artz, 2011. "The Voice Effect of Unions: Evidence from the US," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 32(4), pages 326-335, December.
    10. Anne Eydoux & Marie-Thérèse Letablier, 2008. "Gestion de la Parentalité en Allemagne, France et Royaume-Uni :La Promotion de la Responsabilité Sociale des Entreprises et ses Enjeux," Brussels Economic Review, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles, vol. 51(2:3), pages 387-405.
    11. KATO Takao & KODAMA Naomi, 2016. "Corporate Social Responsibility and Gender Diversity in the Workplace: Evidence from Japan," Discussion papers 16063, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    12. Parera-Nicolau, Antonia & Mumford, Karen A., 2005. "Labour Supply and Childcare for British Mothers in Two-Parent Families: A Structural Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 1908, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J51 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor-Management Relations, Trade Unions, and Collective Bargaining - - - Trade Unions: Objectives, Structure, and Effects
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J32 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Nonwage Labor Costs and Benefits; Retirement Plans; Private Pensions

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