Building the Party in the Workplace
and in the Trade Union Movement
This 9th Congress of the Communist Party of Australia calls on the incoming Central Committee and all Party organisations and members to give high priority to building the influence and membership of the Communist Party in the workplace and the trade union movement. The trade unions are the most important organisations of the workers in their daily fight against the capitalist employing class. Trade unions are a vital arena for workers in testing different ideologies and policies. In this contest, the CPA has much to offer to advance the working-class movement. At present, our forces in the trade union movement remain too weak to properly fulfil our ideological potential. Strengthening our work in this area is a vital issue for the Party. Such work will strengthen the trade unions as well as the Party. The trade unions should not confine themselves to local economic issues, but must take up political questions and issues of international solidarity. We must encourage unions to act on all issues having a bearing on the lives of all workers. Congress calls on all Party organisations to discuss perspectives for building Party workplace and industry branches as the main means to strengthen our influence in the working class, especially in the trade union movement. Building workplace branches will greatly enhance the Party's support among the working class. In many cases this will also serve to strengthen the trade unions themselves. As a first step, Party organisations need to be active in assisting the union activity of their members and supporters in their workplace. Regular discussion at branch meetings is a necessary step. Inviting workmates to Party meetings to discuss workplace issues can be fruitful in extending the Party's influence in the workplace, including gaining new members. Party discussion and education classes can help comrades see events in their industry as part of the wider economic and political processes. Comrades should seek to give their work some perspective, formulating short-term and medium-term goals of their political activity in their workplace and industry. Congress calls on the incoming Central Committee, State and District organisations to give high priority to analysing the composition of branches and where possible and advantageous, restructure Party organisations to create a focus on workplaces and industries. Branches thus formed should be fully functioning, well-led Party branches, with a special focus on the working class and trade union movements. Party organisations should co-ordinate the work of trade union activists across districts, states, nationally and on an international basis. Congress calls on the incoming Central Committee to bring together Party trade union activists at the next Party national school and thus give attention to the national co-ordination, communication and the building of the Communist Party in workplaces, industries and in the trade union movement. Congress calls on the Central Committee to allocate responsibility to comrades for co-ordinating our Party's work in workplaces and the trade unions. The Central Committee shall conduct yearly reviews to assess progress in this area.