Which union is right for me?

The German Union Association (Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund – DGB) is made up of eight unions that have come together to represent the interests of all their members. A total of 6.1 million people are members of this union. You can reach the DGB-Jugend youth branch online at www.jugend.dbg.de. Which union you can become a member of depends on the industry you work in or would like to work in in the future. Here is an overview of these eight unions and their industries to give you an idea of which is right for you.

IG Bauen-Agrar-Umwelt (IG BAU): Employees and trainees in the construction, housing, agriculture, gardening and landscaping, forestry, floristry, facility management, janitorial, roofing, scaffolding, stonemasonry, painting and varnishing, glazing, heating construction and construction materials industries. www.igbau.de

IG Bergbau, Chemie, Energie (IG BCE): Employees and trainees in all areas relating to mining, decontamination and disposal, paper manufacturing, rubber processing, electricity, chemistry, plastics, leather, ceramics, glass, mineral oils and gas. www.igbce-jugend.de

Gewerkschaft Erziehung und Wissenschaft (GEW): Employees working in education and academic careers. This includes workers at private and public schools, childcare facilities and children’s homes, universities, academic institutes and research facilities, community colleges and other further education facilities, German schools and universities abroad, and Goethe Institutes. Students of all related subjects can also join the GEW. www.gew.de

IG Metall (IGM): Employees and trainees working in the metal (metal industry and craft), motor vehicles, electronics, iron and steel, textiles and clothing, wood and plastics industries as well as businesses involved in information and communication technology. www.jugend.igmetall.de

Gewerkschaft Nahrung-Genuss-Gaststätten (NGG): Employees and trainees in the hotel and hospitality (accommodation, restaurants, system gastronomy), food and drinks, and tobacco industries (including bakeries, meat and fish, drinks, milk, fruit and vegetables, starches, sugars, sweets, tobacco). www.junge-ngg.net

Gewerkschaft der Polizei (GDP): Applicants, trainees and employees within the police service, as well as everyone working in associated administration and other facilities. www.gdpde/JungeGruppe

EVG Gewerkschaft der Eisenbahner Deutschlands (GdED, GDBA): Employees and trainees in all areas of transport: Deutsche Bahn AG (including subsidiaries), rail authorities (Federal Rail Office, Federal Rail Authority and Bahnklinik), non-state railways, Scandlines, Bodenseeschifffahrtsbetriebe, mountain railways and rail service providers. www.evg-online.org/Jugend/

Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft (ver.di): Supports employees and trainees in 13 areas across public and private services: financial services, supply and disposal, health (social services, welfare and church), social insurance, education (science and research, including all students of all relevant subjects), federation and states, municipalities, media (art and culture, printing and paper), industrial services and production, telecommunications (information technology, data processing), postal services (shipping and logistics), traffic, trading, other special services. www.verdi-jugend.de

So, do you know which union you belong to now? If not, just get in touch with one and ask! For more information, you can download or order a copy of the “What Do Unions Do” brochure from www.dgb-bestellservice.de/besys_dgb/auswahl.php?artikelnr=DGB41531.


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