Freedom of Association

(redirected from Right of association)
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Freedom of Association

 

the right of working people to establish and to join trade unions; also, the freedom of action of the trade unions themselves. The chief meaning of freedom of association is to provide organizations of working people in the capitalist countries with the opportunity to defend the interests of workers and other exploited groups without interference by state authorities or employers’ associations.

Owing to the efforts of the USSR and the other socialist countries, as well as of workers’ organizations of all countries, freedom of association has been internationally recognized. It has been established in such UN documents as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), the Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights, and a number of conventions of the International Labor Organization, including the Freedom of Association Convention and the Right to Organize, and the Right to Organize and Collective Bargaining Convention. These documents declare that working people have the right to establish their own organizations without preliminary approval, to elect their own representatives freely, and to formulate programs of action and create federations and confederations.

In actuality, the freedom of association of working people is often limited and violated in the capitalist countries. At the same time, the bourgeoisie attempts to use existing laws on freedom of association to strengthen the influence of employers’ associations, arguing that any guarantees won by workers’ organizations should automatically apply to employers’ associations as well. The demands of trade unions with respect to freedom of association were formulated in the Charter of the Rights of Trade Unions and Socioeconomic Demands of the Workers of the Capitalist Countries in the Current Phase, adopted at the Eighth World Congress of Trade Unions (October 1973).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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As such, our uneasiness with the right of association as a constitutional matter may have something to do with our uneasiness with the freedom of association as a political matter.
"In dealing with the Dalai Lama, the government is sensitive to the need to uphold the right of association espoused in our constitution but must balance that with the real or imagined role of Dalai Lama," it reportedly said.
While children must be guaranteed the right of association and freedom of expression, in the current climate of spiralling tension, children in Yemen have been exposed to exploitation, as well as life-threatening dangers and far too often pay a heavy price with their physical and mental wellbeing.
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The right of association is a Constitutional civil liberty right.
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Another way to view the Supreme Court's analysis is that the constitutional right that inmates retain at least to some degree is not necessarily the right to visits from family and friends, in and of itself, but rather the more fundamental underlying First Amendment right of association. The "right" to receive visits, if any such right exists, may be restricted, in the court's view, on the basis of legitimate penological concerns of prison officials, especially where visits are not totally terminated and where there remains alternative ways to communicate with family and friends.