Former non-union firefighter(6 years Rural/Metro) AND current (18+years Phoenix) union firefighter here....
Unions have their place. The devil is in the details here and relate to two things;
1- what are the conditions at the workplace creating the need to form a union?
2-what are they trying to accomplish (pay, benefits, work hours)
Without a clear answer on any of these its hard to say. Union praise/bashing results from these discussions without knowing any facts and people tend to lean towards their biases.
Ive been involved with MANY aspects of unions all the way from hating them to trying to organize them in the workplace.(IAFF and UAW) Too much to cover in one post here..
ACCURATE details would be best..... A snapshot of the corporations finances and balance sheet will explain a lot towards the feasibility of a benefits increase. Most people think a company or its owner are always filthy rich and hoard money to themselves... not true