How to Join CWA Canada

Organizing Your Workplace

Getting your workplace organized can be done fairly quickly.

It all starts with a phone call or email to CWA Canada’s head office in Ottawa.
Call toll-free: 1.877.486.4292 Email:

We keep it all confidential.

Discuss With Colleagues

Talk about it with a small group of trusted co-workers. Do they share your concerns or have other issues? Is there a common theme such as lack of respect and dignity, lack of voice in the workplace, unfair treatment, favouritism, disparity in wages and benefits?

If so, contact CWA Canada and we will have a staff member help you evaluate the situation and decide whether to move forward with a campaign.

Card Sign Up and Campaign

Once it is clear there is potential for majority support, you form a committee of employees who are willing to help build a union.

Remember: It is illegal for your employer to take action against you or your colleagues for union activities.

The CWA Canada staff member helps the committee to sign a majority of your co-workers. Depending on your province, this will result in the appropriate Labour Board granting the union automatic certification and/or ordering a vote of all employees to see if there is majority support.

Once the Labour Board is satisfied of majority support and has granted certification, the union has legal status in your workplace.

What Happens Next?

You and your colleagues elect an executive of volunteers from your workplace to run your Local’s affairs. The executive determines what the members want in a contract. An elected bargaining team, with the help of the CWA Canada staff member, negotiates the first collective agreement with the company.

Do We Have to Strike to Get What We Want?

No. Nearly all of CWA Canada’s collective agreements are reached without strike action. There can never be a strike unless you and a majority of your co-workers vote to strike.

In the rare event of a strike, CWA Canada’s strike pay is among the highest of any union.

What the Union Costs

You and your colleagues decide how much your union dues will be, subject to the union’s Constitution. Dues generally run about 1.5 per cent of earnings and are eligible for a tax credit.


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