Unions have not just negotiated better pay (although I really wish people would stop acting like I need to defend getting paid well for the very hard work I do). Unions create more equity (as a woman I get paid the same as my male counterparts in spite of the fact that this isn't true in any non-unionized profession in Canada and the stats back this up). Being able to negotiate pay individually is actually a disadvantage as a woman because the odds are stacked against me (the author of Lean In does a great job reviewing the research about this). Unions limit work load to a reasonable level. They ensure I have access to sick leave and other types of leave. They support me if something goes wrong at work. I could go on and on. Our union dues in Ontario are not low but I don't for a minute question their value. None of these things are available to my non-unionized private school teacher colleagues in Ontario.