A guild is an association of artisans or merchants who oversee the practice of their craft/trade in a particular area. The earliest types of guild formed as a confraternities of tradesmen, they were organized in a manner something between a professional association, a trade union, a cartel, a secret society. They depended on grants of letters patent from a monarch or other authority to enforce the flow of trade to their self-employed members, to retain ownership of tools and the supply of materials. A lasting legacy of traditional guilds are the guildhalls constructed and used as guild meeting-places. Guild members found guilty of cheating on the public would be banned from the guild. An important result of the guild framework was the emergence of universities at Bologna and Paris. A type of guild was known in Roman times. Known as collegium, collegia or corpus, these were organised groups of merchants who specialised in a particular craft and whose membership of the group was voluntary. One such example is the corpus naviculariorum, the college of long-distance shippers based at Rome's La Ostia port.
The Roman guilds failed to survive the collapse of the Roman Empire. In medieval cities, craftsmen tended to form associations based on their trades, confraternities of textile workers, carpenters, glass workers, each of whom controlled secrets of traditionally imparted technology, the "arts" or "mysteries" of their crafts; the founders were free independent master craftsmen who hired apprentices. There were several types of guilds, including the two main categories of merchant guilds and craft guilds but the frith guild and religious guild. Guilds arose beginning in the High Middle Ages as craftsmen united to protect their common interests. In the German city of Augsburg craft guilds are being mentioned in the Towncharter of 1156; the continental system of guilds and merchants arrived in England after the Norman Conquest, with incorporated societies of merchants in each town or city holding exclusive rights of doing business there. In many cases they became the governing body of a town. For example, London's Guildhall became the seat of the Court of Common Council of the City of London Corporation, the world’s oldest continuously elected local government, whose members to this day must be Freemen of the City.
The Freedom of the City, effective from the Middle Ages until 1835, gave the right to trade, was only bestowed upon members of a Guild or Livery. Early egalitarian communities called "guilds" were denounced by Catholic clergy for their "conjurations" — the binding oaths sworn among the members to support one another in adversity, kill specific enemies, back one another in feuds or in business ventures; the occasion for these oaths were drunken banquets held on December 26, the pagan feast of Jul —in 858, West Francian Bishop Hincmar sought vainly to Christianise the guilds. In the Early Middle Ages, most of the Roman craft organisations formed as religious confraternities, had disappeared, with the apparent exceptions of stonecutters and glassmakers the people that had local skills. Gregory of Tours tells a miraculous tale of a builder whose art and techniques left him, but were restored by an apparition of the Virgin Mary in a dream. Michel Rouche remarks that the story speaks for the importance of transmitted journeymanship.
In France, guilds were called corps de métiers. According to Viktor Ivanovich Rutenburg, "Within the guild itself there was little division of labour, which tended to operate rather between the guilds. Thus, according to Étienne Boileau's Book of Handicrafts, by the mid-13th century there were no less than 100 guilds in Paris, a figure which by the 14th century had risen to 350." There were different guilds of metal-workers: the farriers, knife-makers, chain-forgers, nail-makers formed separate and distinct corporations. In Catalan towns, specially at Barcelona, guilds or gremis were a basic agent in the society: a shoemakers' guild is recorded in 1208. In England in the City of London Corporation, more than 110 guilds, referred to as livery companies, survive today, with the oldest more than a thousand years old. Other groups, such as the Worshipful Company of Tax Advisers, have been formed far more recently. Membership in a livery company is expected for individuals participating in the governance of The City, as the Lord Mayor and the Remembrancer.
The guild system reached a mature state in Germany circa 1300 and held on in German cities into the 19th century, with some special privileges for certain occupations remaining today. In the 15th century, Hamburg had 100 guilds, Cologne 80, Lübeck 70; the latest guilds to develop in Western Europe were the gremios of Spain: Toledo. Not all city economies were controlled by guilds. Where guilds were in control, they shaped labor and trade. In order to become a master, a journeyman would have to go on a three-year voyage called journeyman years; the practice of the journeyman years still exists in France. As production became more specialized, trade guilds were divided and subdivided, eliciting the squabbles over jurisdiction that produced the paperwork by which economic historians trace their development: The
Social security is "any government system that provides monetary assistance to people with an inadequate or no income." In the United States, this is called welfare or a social safety net when talking about Canada and European countries. Social security is asserted in Article 22 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states: Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security and is entitled to realization, through national effort and international co-operation and in accordance with the organization and resources of each State, of the economic and cultural rights indispensable for his dignity and the free development of his personality. In simple terms, the signatories agree that the society in which a person lives should help them to develop and to make the most of all the advantages which are offered to them in the country. Social security may refer to the action programs of an organization intended to promote the welfare of the population through assistance measures guaranteeing access to sufficient resources for food and shelter and to promote health and well-being for the population at large and vulnerable segments such as children, the elderly, the sick and the unemployed.
Services providing social security are called social services. Terminology in this area is somewhat different in the United States from in the rest of the English-speaking world; the general term for an action program in support of the well being of poor people in the United States is welfare program, the general term for all such programs is welfare. In American society, the term welfare arguably has negative connotations. In the United States, the term Social Security refers to the US social insurance program for all retired and disabled people. Elsewhere the term is used in a much broader sense, referring to the economic security society offers when people are faced with certain risks. In its 1952 Social Security Convention, the International Labour Organization defined the traditional contingencies covered by social security as including: Survival beyond a prescribed age, to be covered by old age pensions. People who cannot reach a guaranteed social minimum for other reasons may be eligible for social assistance.
Modern authors consider the ILO approach too narrow. In their view, social security is not limited to the provision of cash transfers, but aims at security of work and social participation. Social security may refer to: social insurance, where people receive benefits or services in recognition of contributions to an insurance program; these services include provision for retirement pensions, disability insurance, survivor benefits and unemployment insurance. Services provided by government or designated agencies responsible for social security provision. In different countries, that may include medical care, financial support during unemployment, sickness, or retirement and safety at work, aspects of social work and industrial relations. Basic security irrespective of participation in specific insurance programs where eligibility may otherwise be an issue. For instance, assistance given to newly arrived refugees for basic necessities such as food, housing, education and medical care. A report published by the ILO in 2014 estimated that only 27% of the world's population has access to comprehensive social security.
While several of the provisions to which the concept refers have a long history, the notion of "social security" itself is a recent one. The earliest examples of use date from the 19th century. In a speech to mark the independence of Venezuela, Simón Bolívar pronounced: "El sistema de gobierno más perfecto es aquel que produce mayor suma de felicidad posible, mayor suma de seguridad social y mayor suma de estabilidad política". In the Roman Empire, the Emperor Trajan distributed gifts of money and free grain to the poor in the city of Rome, returned the gifts of gold sent to him upon his accession by cities in Italy and the provinces of the Empire. Trajan's program brought acclaim including Pliny the Younger. In Jewish tradition, charity is a matter of religious obligation rather than benevolence. Contemporary charity is regarded as a continuation of the Biblical Maaser Ani, or poor-tithe, as well as Biblical practices, such as permitting the poor to glean the corners of a field and harvest during the Shmi
A trade union called a labour union or labor union, is an association of workers in a particular trade, industry, or company created for the purpose of securing improvement in pay, working conditions or social and political status through collective bargaining and working conditions through the increased bargaining power wielded by creation of a monopoly of the workers. The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members and negotiates labour contracts with employers; the most common purpose of these associations or unions is "maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment". This may include the negotiation of wages, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring and promotion of workers, workplace safety and policies. Unions may organize a particular section of skilled workers, a cross-section of workers from various trades, or attempt to organize all workers within a particular industry; the agreements negotiated by a union are binding on the rank and file members and the employer and in some cases on other non-member workers.
Trade unions traditionally have a constitution which details the governance of their bargaining unit and have governance at various levels of government depending on the industry that binds them to their negotiations and functioning. Originating in Great Britain, trade unions became popular in many countries during the Industrial Revolution. Trade unions may be composed of individual workers, past workers, apprentices or the unemployed. Trade union density, or the percentage of workers belonging to a trade union, is highest in the Nordic countries. Since the publication of the History of Trade Unionism by Sidney and Beatrice Webb, the predominant historical view is that a trade union "is a continuous association on wage earners for the purpose of maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment." Karl Marx described trade unions thus: "The value of labour-power constitutes the conscious and explicit foundation of the trade unions, whose importance for the working class can scarcely be overestimated.
The trade unions aim at nothing less than to prevent the reduction of wages below the level, traditionally maintained in the various branches of industry. That is to say, they wish to prevent the price of labour-power from falling below its value". A modern definition by the Australian Bureau of Statistics states that a trade union is "an organization consisting predominantly of employees, the principal activities of which include the negotiation of rates of pay and conditions of employment for its members."Yet historian R. A. Leeson, in United we Stand, said: Two conflicting views of the trade-union movement strove for ascendancy in the nineteenth century: one the defensive-restrictive guild-craft tradition passed down through journeymen's clubs and friendly societies... the other the aggressive-expansionist drive to unite all'labouring men and women' for a'different order of things'. Recent historical research by Bob James in Craft, Trade or Mystery puts forward the view that trade unions are part of a broader movement of benefit societies, which includes medieval guilds, Oddfellows, friendly societies, other fraternal organizations.
The 18th century economist Adam Smith noted the imbalance in the rights of workers in regards to owners. In The Wealth of Nations, Book I, chapter 8, Smith wrote: We hear, it has been said, of the combination of masters, though of those of workmen, but whoever imagines, upon this account, that masters combine, is as ignorant of the world as of the subject. Masters are always and everywhere in a sort of tacit, but constant and uniform combination, not to raise the wages of labor above their actual rate When workers combine, masters... never cease to call aloud for the assistance of the civil magistrate, the rigorous execution of those laws which have been enacted with so much severity against the combination of servants and journeymen. As Smith noted, unions were illegal for many years in most countries, although Smith argued that it should remain illegal to fix wages or prices by employees or employers. There were severe penalties for including execution. Despite this, unions were formed and began to acquire political power resulting in a body of labour law that not only legalized organizing efforts, but codified the relationship between employers and those employees organized into unions.
The origins of trade unions can be traced back to 18th century Britain, where the rapid expansion of industrial society taking place drew women, rural workers and immigrants into the work force in large numbers and in new roles. They encountered a large hostility in their early existence from employers and government groups; this pool of unskilled and semi-skilled labour spontaneously organized in fits and starts throughout its beginnings, would be an important arena for the development of trade unions. Trade unions have sometimes been seen as successors to the guilds of medieval Europe, though the relationship between the two is disputed, as the masters of the guilds employed workers who were not allowed to organize. Trade unions and collective bargaining were outlawed from no than the middle of the 14th century when the Ordinance of Labourers was enacted in the Kingdom of England but their way of thinking was the one that endured dur
Freelancers Union is a non-profit organization in the United States of America. The organization provides advocacy and health insurance to its members through its for-profit Freelancers Insurance Company; the union promotes information through monthly meetings. Membership in Freelancers Union is more than 350,000 nationwide, with more than half in New York State; this includes people who work as freelancers, independent contractors, part-timers, contingent employees, those who are otherwise self-employed. This segment of workers makes up one-third of the American workforce. Nearly 25,000 people purchase insurance through the organization's Freelancers Insurance Company; because they are employed in nontraditional arrangements, independent workers do not have access to employer-based health care insurance. To address this, Working Today, a 501 nonprofit organization, launched Freelancers Union in 2001. Sara Horowitz founded Working Today in New York City in 1995, in order to represent the needs and concerns of the growing independent workforce.
Before founding Working Today – Freelancers Union, Horowitz was a labor law attorney in private practice and a union organizer with SEIU 1199, the National Health and Human Service Employees Union. Freelancers Union has created a portable benefits delivery system, linking benefits to individuals rather than to employers, so independent workers can maintain benefits as they move from job to job and project to project; the organization tries to increase the visibility of independent workers, bringing issues that concern freelancers to the attention of media and policy makers. From tax relief to unemployment and worker’s compensation, Freelancers Union advocates for legal reform on these issues. Freelancers Union provides its members with online tools, business management information, networking opportunities, group discount terms with various vendors or partners, other assistance in working as independents. Membership is free of charge, as is members' access to the union's meetings and basic information.
Members pay fees for certain events and other services, as well as premiums if they elect to buy health insurance through the union. In 2003, a re-branding of Working Today’s Portable Benefits Network was launched; the new “pilot” program, called The Freelancers Union, offers freelancers membership services like affordable health care, life insurance, a forum for discussion on what freelancing is like in the current economy. Though freelancers could not unionize, the group worked to provide a “collective” platform for advocacy, it was geared to appeal to its namesake: freelancers; the updated Freelancers Union began to use "slogans to combine squishy ideals of teamwork, co-operation—'Organize and Mobilize:"Working for the Radical Notion of Fairness'—with a Generation Y self-centeredness:'There’s an I in Union,'" appealing directly to the modern freelance audience. Freelancers Insurance Company was founded in 2008. To create the Freelancers Insurance Company, Ms. Horowitz needed to persuade investors to put up $17 million.
The Rockefeller Foundation and others gave $7 million in grants, additional foundations joined in, agreeing to lend the rest at a 3 percent interest rate.” FIC began offering health insurance to members of Freelancers Union on January 1, 2009. As a licensed insurance company in the state of New York, FIC sold a group insurance policy to Freelancers Union, thereby covering eligible members of Freelancers Union living in New York. FIC offered 5 health plan designs, including three copay-based designs and two high deductible plans. All plans were PPOs using a nationwide network provided through BlueCross BlueShield. Freelancers could enroll in an FIC plan by first demonstrating to Freelancers Union that they met certain criteria – continuing the same process, in place for years under Freelancers Union's Portable Benefits Network. A newly formed Political Action Committee made its political debut in September 2009. Canvassing potential candidates via questionnaire in order to find the right people to align and endorse.
“We started the PAC because if you want to change you have to be politically involved."The “Get Paid, Not Played” Campaign was launched in October 2010 and marked the Freelancers Union’s latest effort to publicize the repercussions of late or lack of payment to freelancers. The World’s Longest Invoice campaign followed, a tandem effort to create publicity in order to pass the “Freelancer Payment Protection Act, which the self-employed many of the same remedies for non-payment that regular employees now have, including the right to file grievances with the state department of labor."The Freelancers Union-funded medical clinics opened in 2013. The spaces were created to function ”as the first medical home and serve members of the Freelancers Union Insurance Company." With yoga, iPads and no co-pays and deductibles, the 408 Jay Street clinic, housed in a renovated 6,000 square-foot building, offered same-day services and cooking classes as well as text messaging communications from doctors. The Freelancers Union created the National Benefits Program that same year with a 2014 launch, a program providing “a curated selection of health insurance options for freelancers across the country."
This new tool, the first of its kind, allowed freelancers to search by zip code for benefits such as “401k plan, dental insurance, disability insurance, life insurance, liability insurance and health insurance that are available to independent workers in their area." Health insurance was scheduled to become available via platform in all 50 states by “the Novem
Insurance is a means of protection from financial loss. It is a form of risk management used to hedge against the risk of a contingent or uncertain loss. An entity which provides insurance is known as an insurer, insurance company, insurance carrier or underwriter. A person or entity who buys insurance is known as a policyholder; the insurance transaction involves the insured assuming a guaranteed and known small loss in the form of payment to the insurer in exchange for the insurer's promise to compensate the insured in the event of a covered loss. The loss may or may not be financial, but it must be reducible to financial terms, involves something in which the insured has an insurable interest established by ownership, possession, or pre-existing relationship; the insured receives a contract, called the insurance policy, which details the conditions and circumstances under which the insurer will compensate the insured. The amount of money charged by the insurer to the Policyholder for the coverage set forth in the insurance policy is called the premium.
If the insured experiences a loss, covered by the insurance policy, the insured submits a claim to the insurer for processing by a claims adjuster. The insurer may hedge its own risk by taking out reinsurance, whereby another insurance company agrees to carry some of the risk if the primary insurer deems the risk too large for it to carry. Methods for transferring or distributing risk were practiced by Chinese and Babylonian traders as long ago as the 3rd and 2nd millennia BC, respectively. Chinese merchants travelling treacherous river rapids would redistribute their wares across many vessels to limit the loss due to any single vessel's capsizing; the Babylonians developed a system, recorded in the famous Code of Hammurabi, c. 1750 BC, practiced by early Mediterranean sailing merchants. If a merchant received a loan to fund his shipment, he would pay the lender an additional sum in exchange for the lender's guarantee to cancel the loan should the shipment be stolen, or lost at sea. Circa 800 BC, the inhabitants of Rhodes created the'general average'.
This allowed groups of merchants to pay to insure their goods being shipped together. The collected premiums would be used to reimburse any merchant whose goods were jettisoned during transport, whether due to storm or sinkage. Separate insurance contracts were invented in Genoa in the 14th century, as were insurance pools backed by pledges of landed estates; the first known insurance contract dates from Genoa in 1347, in the next century maritime insurance developed and premiums were intuitively varied with risks. These new insurance contracts allowed insurance to be separated from investment, a separation of roles that first proved useful in marine insurance. Insurance became far more sophisticated in Enlightenment era Europe, specialized varieties developed. Property insurance as we know it today can be traced to the Great Fire of London, which in 1666 devoured more than 13,000 houses; the devastating effects of the fire converted the development of insurance "from a matter of convenience into one of urgency, a change of opinion reflected in Sir Christopher Wren's inclusion of a site for'the Insurance Office' in his new plan for London in 1667."
A number of attempted fire insurance schemes came to nothing, but in 1681, economist Nicholas Barbon and eleven associates established the first fire insurance company, the "Insurance Office for Houses," at the back of the Royal Exchange to insure brick and frame homes. 5,000 homes were insured by his Insurance Office. At the same time, the first insurance schemes for the underwriting of business ventures became available. By the end of the seventeenth century, London's growing importance as a center for trade was increasing demand for marine insurance. In the late 1680s, Edward Lloyd opened a coffee house, which became the meeting place for parties in the shipping industry wishing to insure cargoes and ships, those willing to underwrite such ventures; these informal beginnings led to the establishment of the insurance market Lloyd's of London and several related shipping and insurance businesses. The first life insurance policies were taken out in the early 18th century; the first company to offer life insurance was the Amicable Society for a Perpetual Assurance Office, founded in London in 1706 by William Talbot and Sir Thomas Allen.
Edward Rowe Mores established the Society for Equitable Assurances on Lives and Survivorship in 1762. It was the world's first mutual insurer and it pioneered age based premiums based on mortality rate laying "the framework for scientific insurance practice and development" and "the basis of modern life assurance upon which all life assurance schemes were subsequently based."In the late 19th century "accident insurance" began to become available. The first company to offer accident insurance was the Railway Passengers Assurance Company, formed in 1848 in England to insure against the rising number of fatalities on the nascent railway system. By the late 19th century governments began to initiate national insurance programs against sickness and old age. Germany built on a tradition of welfare programs in Prussia and Saxony that began as early as in the 1840s. In the 1880s Chancellor Otto von Bismarck introduced old age pensions, accident insurance and medical care that formed the basis for Germany's welfare state.
In Britain more extensive legislation was introduced by the Liberal government in the 1911 National Insurance Act. This gave the British working classes the first contributory system of insurance against illness and unemployment; this system was expanded after the Second World War under the inf
Sara Horowitz is the founder and executive director of Freelancers Union. She is a member of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York Board of Directors. Horowitz grew up in Brooklyn Heights in Brooklyn, New York, her grandfather was vice-president of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union in New York and her father was a union lawyer. Horowitz graduated from Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations with a B. A. was awarded its labor prize. She graduated cum laude from the University at Buffalo Law School. After graduation, she worked as a public defender, a private practice labor attorney, an organizer with SEIU 1199, the national health and human service employees union, she attended the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and received her MPA in 1995, she was admitted to practice law in New Jersey and Pennsylvania in 1995. Horowitz was an Echoing Green fellow in 1995, was named a MacArthur Fellow in 1999. In 2003, she used her experience as a union organizer to found the nonprofit Freelancers Union, which promotes the independent workforce through advocacy and education while serving the needs of freelancers.
The Freelancers Union cites 350,000 members, nationwide. She is a chair of the New York Fed's Board of Directors for 2017 and has served as a Class C director since January, 2013, serving as a deputy chair since January, 2013. In 2008, Horowitz launched Freelancers Insurance Company, the first portable benefits model for freelancers and 919 workers, wholly owned by the Union, providing independent workers with high-quality and portable health insurance. Horowitz is recognized as one of the World Economic Forum's 100 Global Leaders for Tomorrow, a 2015 POLITICO 50 and on the board of Women's Housing and Economic Development Corporation, she is the Chair of the Board for the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Biography on Freelancers Union website