The 38 Hour Week Victory

Introduction - Don Sutherland

Here are 4 pages from "The Metal Worker" that cover the start and the culmination of the winning of the 38 hour week through to 1981. Although reduced working hours had been or were being achieved here and there, June 1980 marked the serious escalation of the struggle into an across the board achievement for all Australian workers.

Laurie Carmichael led this struggle at the national level.

He discussed it in some detail in his lectures on "Strategy" to the Organising Works trainees in the mid-1990's.

It is important to note that the struggle delivered a wage increase also right in the early stages of the 1981-2 recession supervised by the then Fraser Liberal government.

You can read his article about the struggle at this site: click here.