Reaching out to members digitally: e-mails still the most common tool
A huge majority of respondents declared that emails were still the most common tool to reach out to workers if they work from home and “traditional” newsletter.
In addition to these classical methods, unions/associations also developed other online communication: the Trade Union of Journalists of Croatia reported that they use closed groups on social media, in particular at public broadcaster HRT. The Belgian association also uses social media and several other unions/associations (Luxembourg, Turkey, Serbia and Germany) reported using specific software such as Zoom and Trello to organise online meetings and communication with members.
Interestingly enough, in countries where trade unions are well established, such as France, unions reported cases of service companies where employers forbid unions to communicate with their members via e-mails. This situation was brought to court.

Good practice from another sector

In April 2021, the German union IG-BCE and employers in the rubber industry reached an agreement confirming that trade unions have a legal right to recruit and contact teleworking employees. The agreement guarantees:
1. the possibility of publishing trade union information via company information systems (e.g. digital "notice board" on the company intranet).
2. forwarding trade union information via company digital information systems (mailing lists).
3. access to or use of company video conferencing systems for trade union digital meetings (online consultation hour, online meeting).
4. access to or use of existing company communication channels for directly addressing and informing workers.
The list of digital access channels is not exhaustive. When new communication channels are made available within the company or when the possibilities are extended by technical developments, the agreement should be reviewed.
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