Essays on Trade Union Movements Support of the Labor Party in Australia Case Study

Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing

The paper "Trade Union Movement’ s Support of the Labor Party in Australia" is a good example of a business case study.   This paper reviews the trade union movement’ s support of the Labor party in Australia and seeks to understand the possible causes of the same. It attempts to explicate and adumbrate the influence of Australia’ s political system as well as other related factors on the same. From statistics, the membership of these trade unions has drastically dropped over the past twenty years. Much as this is the case, the trade unions have continually counted much as far as the politics of the country is involved.

Of the many political parties in the country, the Australian Labor Party (ALP) stands out as the most popular of the rest to the unions. We are therefore expected to determine what could be the actual cause of the same. It is therefore inevitable for us to understand the major roles of these unions so as to be in a position to conclusively explain the situation as it is. The Australian Labor party popularly known as ALP is a political party whose existence dates back to the year 1891 when it was set up by the labour movement in Australia.

Soon after the 2007 poll, the party began to solely govern Australia’ s Commonwealth. At the moment it also rules in a good number of states and territories (Clarke, 1996). In addition to being the longest-running political party in the country, ALP has had the initiative to contend against the Liberal Coalition for political offices both at the federal and grass-root levels. THE EMERGENCE OF TRADE UNIONS – THE SEED At the time when we had an industrial revolution, several cases of shortage of skilled labour occurred (Costa, 1997).

This consequently led to the fact that the wellbeing of the employees was solely at the mercy of the employers. As such it became obvious that more often than not the employees were found on the receiving end. Great levels of capitalism and mistreatment of these employees were experienced during this period (McKinlay, 1981). An elaborate system was therefore in the long run needed to advocate for the rights of these employees. In this case, nothing could become handier than the various trade unions that began to emerge while at the same time gaining popularity during this period. A trade union is whereby a taskforce comes together in an attempt to push for a common agenda that is in a position to help them in their future development (Dine, 2007).

A major goal of one such agenda could be the general need for better working conditions at the workplace. The leadership of the trade union is usually charged with the task of negotiating with the employers on behalf of their workers who are members of that particular trade union (Dine, 2007). Ever since then, the trade unions have experienced major dynamic trends. The establishment of the ALP The factors that led to the establishment of the Australian Labour Party date back to the nineteenth century (Fells, 1999).

They were characterized by the origins of the trade unions movement and their fitful efforts to ensure workers were properly represented in the colonial governments. During the time, a good number of candidates who were to be successful for elections tried to woo the masses by claiming they were representing the interests of the workers.

In addition to this, having the backing of a trade union was considered a major stepping stone to any such individual (Costa, 1997). With time, however, straightening out of social or industrial legislation could only be determined by the disposition of the recognition of the high ranking policymakers, cabals and political parties. In the year 1980 or so, a number of leaders of the trade union movement came to the realization that a dissimilar form of political mobilization was mandatory if there was to be any need to confront the aftermaths of the terrible economic depression of the time and the negative attitude that was being developed by the employees towards the trade unions.

The main contributor to this particular change of strategy was a fatal inter-colonial strike that comprised individuals drawn from all the unions. It actually targeted those in pastoral and maritime industries (McMullin, 1991).



Calwell, A. (1963). Labor's Role in Modern Society. Melbourne: Lansdowne Press.

Clarke, F. (1996). Australia: A Concise Political and Social History. Sidney: Harcourt Brace & Company.

Costa, M. (1997). Union Strategy Post the Work Place Relations Act 1996. Australian Bulletin of Labour , 48-58.

Dine, P. (2007). State of the Unions: How Labor Can Strengthen the Middle Class, Improve Our Economy, and Regain Political Influence. New York: McGraw-Hill Professional.

Fells, R. (1999). Competitive Negotiation and the Question of Union Negotiating Rights. Labour & Industry , 99-122.

McKinlay, B. (1981). The ALP: A Short History of the Australian Labor Party. Melbourne: Drummond/Heinemann.

McMullen, R. (2004). So Monstrous a Travesty. Scribe Publications , 4.

McMullin, R. (1991). The Light on the Hill: The Australian Labor Party 1891–1991. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
Contact Us