Ray Markey writes in The Conversation (27.4.16) about the often over-stated and misinterpreted relationship between the union movement and the Labor Party in Australia.
‘The Australian Labor Party was formed by trade unions in the 1890s. It is one of a small number in the world where unions affiliate directly with the party. This gives the unions significant representation in the party’s internal structures and forums, and influence in choice of parliamentary candidates.
‘Organisational integration facilitates the convergence of ideology and personnel. The relationship provides mutual benefits through influence on party policy for the unions, and financial and personnel resources for electoral campaigns.’