Labour History: A Journal of Labour and Social History

The Mudginberri Abattoir Dispute of 1985

Labour History: A Journal of Labour and Social History (1999), 76, (1), 107–124.

Abstract

In recent years there have been a number of attempts to introduce non-union labour into traditionally organised sectors such as the stevedore and mining industries. These strategies had their origins in the mid-1980s with the rise of the militant managerialism of the New Right. One of the most celebrated victories of the New Right occurred in 1985 when the Australasian Meat Industry Employees Union was sued for damages after it had established a picket line outside the small Mudginberri abattoir, near Darwin. From this time on Mudginberri became a symbol for all forces in the nation wanting to reduce the power of trade unions. It also had a considerable impact on the Northern Territory meat industry and the lives of its workers. Previous articles that have attributed this defeat to a union leadership out of touch with its membership are simplistic and ignore the support the union gained from Territory meatworkers.

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Author details

Brian, Bernie

Table of Contents

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