How to elect a shop steward at the workplace

In a given workplace, a shop steward is elected by those employees who are members of SEL. The employer or the workers who are not members of SEL have no right to take part in the election of the shop steward.

The shop steward is elected every two years. The next election will take place during autumn 2020. The person chosen must be a member of SEL.

The candidates are nominated at the meeting of the local branch of SEL in October-November. The meeting must be summoned at least three days before it is to take place. The board of the local branch or the shop committee decides the time and the place of the nomination meeting. The meeting must primarily be held at the workplace.

There will be no election if there are no more than one candidate for the position. If there are no candidates at all, the board of the local branch can elect the shop steward among those members who are willing to accept the responsibility.

The organization of the elections at the workplace is the responsibility of an electoral commission consisting of at least three members who are elected at the nomination meeting of the local branch.

The election at the workplace is to be held in November-December. The time of the election is to be agreed upon with the employer at least 14 days prior to the election taking place. A declaration must be made public on the notice board at the workplace at least one week before the election takes place. The declaration must state when and where the election takes place as well as the names of the candidates.

The election is to be organized so that every person entitled to vote has the real opportunity to do so. The election period must be long enough to allow all those who work in shifts or are on a holiday to exercise their right vote. In addition, the rules of accessibility must be observed.

The election is carried out as a closed ballot. The member’s right to vote is checked with the member list or by presenting a valid membership card. After the right to vote is verified, the voter gets a ballot paper, casts a vote and returns the paper to the polling clerk who stamps it. After stamping the voter places it in the ballot box.

The electoral commission calculates the votes. The local branch confirms the election result. The results of the election must be shared with the employer and the regional office of SEL by using the correct form. This notification must be done even if the newly chosen shop stewards are the same ones as previously.

The shop steward is a union representative at the workplace. The shop steward takes care of SEL members’ interests and ensures that the rights of employees, the law, collective agreements or other agreements are not violated in the workplaces. If you have a question about your terms of employment or have a dispute over them with your employer, the shop steward will advise and support you in finding a solution.