The Formation and Role of an Independent Trades and Labor Council in Western Australia: A Case Study
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In this presentation I demonstrate how the Western Australian case study that forms the substance of my written paper can address two of the deficiencies in the existing study of peak bodies as demonstrated by Ellem and Shields in their paper, 'Theorising peak union formation, purpose and power'. According to Shields and Ellem, while 'in most Australian literature, the existence of a peak body is simply assumed and the motivations of its founders taken to be self evident', 'the briefest acquaintance with the history of Australia peak bodies reveals as much division as unity and often as many unions in 'splendid isolation' as within a peak body's comforting embrace'. They then go on to say that the AWU and the Labour Council of NSW are 'the most obvious' examples of 'organisational aloofness'.I hope that in detailing the major developments of the split between the ALP and the TLC, and the ACTU's role therein, I show the complexity of factors determining the development of peak bodies and the relationships of their affiliates.
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