Union rationalisation: the case of Mount Isa mines

Hunt, Doug (1997) Union rationalisation: the case of Mount Isa mines. In: Proceedings of the 11th AIRAANZ Conference, pp. 164-172. From: 11th AIRAANZ Conference, 1997, Brisbane, QLD, Australia.

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Abstract

During 1993 Mount Isa Mines, the Australian Workers‟ Union, and four other unions made separate applications to the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission for the rationalisation of union coverage. In October 1994 the tribunal substantially granted the employer‟s application - a decision challenged both legally and industrially. The issue of union coverage became intertwined with a protracted enterprise bargaining dispute, culminating in a twelve-day lockout in May 1995. This paper examines the experience of union rationalisation at Mount Isa Mines, tracing the complex legal manoeuvres and the motivations and tactics of those involved. While the internecine union conflict may have initiated and certainly dominated the dispute, management made more effective use of the legislation to win both the industrial and legal contests. It is argued that the struggle over representation enabled the company to re-direct its industrial relations strategies. The major conclusion, however, relates to the unintended consequences of union rationalisation policy.

Item ID: 5624
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
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Date Deposited: 02 Dec 2009 05:29
FoR Codes: 15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1503 Business and Management > 150306 Industrial Relations @ 100%
SEO Codes: 91 ECONOMIC FRAMEWORK > 9104 Management and Productivity > 910401 Industrial Relations @ 100%
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