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date: 22 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Employees, their free choice act, and unions and unionizing in Jewish law are the essence of this article. The law equalizes the imbalance by allowing employees to unionize, putting the negotiating power of employees on par with their employers. By banding together, organized workers gain the ability to strike, neutralizing management's ability to withhold employment. The approach of the Jewish law towards the employer–employee relationship is explained in detail. It says employer–employee relationships are no exception. Each side has rights and obligations, ensuring that the worker receives equitable treatment and the employer receives the full value of the employee's labor. The Talmud clarifies that one who withholds a worker's pay actually transgresses five negative commandments and one positive commandment. This article also traces various sources found in Jewish laws relating to labor unions and the power of the citizens and tradesmen. An explanation of the regularization of Jewish law winds up this article.

Keywords: free choice act, Jewish law, negative commandments, Talmud

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