Unison v United Kingdom: ECHR 2002

(Third Chamber) The freedom of association under Article 11 of the ECHR did not include a right for a union to require ‘that an employer enter into or remain in any collective bargaining arrangement’.
‘The Court recalls that, while Article 11 paragraph 1 includes trade union freedom as a specific aspect of freedom of association, this provision does not secure any particular treatment of trade union members by the State. There is no express inclusion of a right to strike or an obligation on employers to engage in collective bargaining. At most, Article 11 may be regarded as safeguarding the freedom of trade unions to protect the occupational interests of their members. While the ability to strike represents one of the most important of the means by which trade unions can fulfil this function, there are others. Furthermore Contracting States are left a choice of means as to how the freedom of trade unions ought to be safeguarded (see the Schmidt and Dahlstrom v Sweden judgment of 6 February 1976, Series A no. 21, pp.15-16, paragraphs 34-36).’


[2002] IRLR 497


European Convention on Human Rights 11

Cited by:

CitedInternational Transport Workers’ Federation and Another v Viking Line Abp and Another CA 3-Nov-2005
An order had been made restraining the defendant trades unions from taking industrial action. The unions said the UK court had no jurisdiction.
Held: ‘It is at first sight surprising that the English Commercial Court should be the forum in . .
CitedMetrobus Ltd v Unite the Union CA 31-Jul-2009
The union sought leave to appeal against an interim injunction restraining it from calling a strike. It now called in aid also its members’ Article 11 Human Rights. The company had questioned whether the ballot met the requirements of the 1992 Act. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Human Rights

Updated: 30 April 2022; Ref: scu.234406