Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Is it permissible to join a trade union ? it says it will work towards defending religious rights at work and getting better pay, conditions and job security for its members
In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate
May Allah’s peace and blessings be upon His Messenger Muhammad, his folk, companions, and followers
Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,
There is nothing wrong with joining a trade or labor union. Rather, if one’s intention is to be part of ensuring employee rights, one would be rewarded for this intention. The normal activities of unions are legal and permissible in the Shariah. One should be wary, however, of getting involved in any activities that would entail: (1) non-fulfillment of your work contract, as it is obligatory in the Shariah to fulfill one’s contracts and undertakings; (2) willfully harming the property or business of one’s employer–such antagonistic activity runs counter to the goals (maqasid) of the Shariah and the spirit of the Qur’an and Sunna of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him). Rather, the Shariah emphasizes seeking one’s rights with excellence, dignified upright behavior, and a spirit of good will and cooperation.
And Allah alone gives success.