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Groups like Stonewall have become big players in the workplace. Linzi

How activist groups became a force in workplace relations

A key event in the British employment calendar is the publication of the Workplace Equality Index each January. It is a ranking of the top-100 “gay-friendly” employers by Stonewall, the UK’s main campaigning…
Members were among ‘few working class people who have still got well paid jobs’. Lewis Whyld/PA

‘A fighter and a man of character’: Bob Crow dead at 52

Bob Crow, the pugnacious General Secretary of the Rail Maritime and Transport Workers Union (RMT), has died at the age of 52 after suffering an aneurysm and a massive heart attack. His passing has brought…
Outsourced workers take things into their own hands. 3Cosas

3Cosas campaign shows migrant workers how to get organised

Trade unions are having to adapt to a new world. The spread of “subcontracted capitalism” across both the private and public sectors has made it increasingly hard to organise workers and win union recognition…
TUC conference is key moment for Ed Miliband. Sean Dempsey/PA

Miliband sweats in the autumn of Labour’s discontent

This September will be one that Ed Miliband will probably want to forget. He must be dreading the inevitable mauling he will get from the union delegates at the Labour Party Conference in Brighton at the…
Sparks will fly between government and the unions if Royal Mail is sold off. Andrew Milligan/PA

Unions prepare for battle over Royal Mail’s future

Union opposition to the Royal Mail sell-off comes as no surprise to any of us. Postmen and women are well known within the public sector for their militancy. But their response must be careful; both the…
Hard words: is Ed Miliband biting the hand that feeds the Labour Party? PA Wire

Miliband and Labour must reconnect with working class

Ed Miliband’s plan to reform Labour relationship with the union movement has its origins much deeper than the recent Falkirk debacle. Of course, Unite in Falkirk West and 40 other constituency Labour parties…
In the aftermath of the Bangladesh factory disaster, questions have been raised about the accountability of governments and retailers in protecting workers' rights. AAP

Global laws needed to safeguard rights of factory workers

It’s been almost a month since the collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in Bangladesh, resulting in the deaths of 1100 garment workers. Some significant responses from business and governments have…
Foxconn will hold its first-ever democratic labour union election but freedom of association in China remains limited. AAP Pictures

Foxconn’s labour union elections put Chinese workers' rights under the spotlight

Apple’s China-based contractor, Foxconn, is following a trend of increasing unionisation at transnational corporations in China by holding its first-ever democratic labour union elections. As reported…
This election year, taxation, industrial relations and red tape will feature prominently on the business community’s agenda. AAP

This election year, business will push for a triumph of policy over paralysis

The business community was effectively sidelined at the last federal election, and they felt somewhat miffed about it. Business associations were caught flat-footed at the suddenness of Julia Gillard’s…
Former Premier Geoff Gallop helped reform the Western Australian Labor Party. But can it be done federally? AAP/Alan Porritt

Gallop: ALP reform is a must for social democracy

There are always two challenges that face a political party operating in a democratic system such as ours – public trust and public policy. When I was elected leader of the Western Australian Parliamentary…
Prime Minister Julia Gillard answered questions about the AWU affair at a press conference yesterday. AAP/Alan Porrit

What went wrong with the AWU?

The recent drama about Julia Gillard’s activities on behalf of one faction of the Australian Workers’ Union back in the early 1990s is another chapter in the long story of money in Australian unions. Parliament…

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