Industrial unionism

industrial unionindustrial unionsrevolutionary industrial unionismindustrialindustrial unionistsindustrial linesindustrial unionistUnionismindustry unionRevolutionary Industrial Union
Industrial unionism is a labour union organizing method through which all workers in the same industry are organized into the same union—regardless of skill or trade—thus giving workers in one industry, or in all industries, more leverage in bargaining and in strike situations.wikipedia
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Trade union

uniontrade unionistlabor union
Industrial unionism is a labour union organizing method through which all workers in the same industry are organized into the same union—regardless of skill or trade—thus giving workers in one industry, or in all industries, more leverage in bargaining and in strike situations.
Unions may organize a particular section of skilled workers (craft unionism), a cross-section of workers from various trades (general unionism), or attempt to organize all workers within a particular industry (industrial unionism).

Craft unionism

craft unioncraft unionscraft
Industrial unionism contrasts with craft unionism, which organizes workers along lines of their specific trades, i.e., workers using the same kind of tools, or doing the same kind of work with approximately the same level of skill, even if this leads to multiple union locals (with different contracts, and different expiration dates) in the same workplace.
It contrasts with industrial unionism, in which all workers in the same industry are organized into the same union, regardless of differences in skill.

Congress of Industrial Organizations

CIOCommittee for Industrial OrganizationCommittee for Industrial Organizations
The Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) primarily practiced a form of industrial unionism prior to its 1955 merger with the American Federation of Labor (AFL), which was mostly craft unions. From the Knights of Labor to the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), with all of the industrial unions and federations in between, the nature of union organization has been in contention for a very long time, and the philosophies of industrial unionism are inter-related.
The Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) was a federation of unions that organized workers in industrial unions in the United States and Canada from 1935 to 1955.

American Federation of Labor

AFLAmerican Federation of LabourA. F. of L.
The Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) primarily practiced a form of industrial unionism prior to its 1955 merger with the American Federation of Labor (AFL), which was mostly craft unions.
The A.F. of L was the largest union grouping in the United States for the first half of the 20th century, even after the creation of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) by unions which were expelled by the AFL in 1935 over its opposition to industrial unionism.

Labor federation competition in the United States

Labor federation competition in the U.S.labor federationa wide variety of union experiences and traditions
From the Knights of Labor to the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO), with all of the industrial unions and federations in between, the nature of union organization has been in contention for a very long time, and the philosophies of industrial unionism are inter-related.
The oft conflicting philosophies between the craft unionists and the industrial unionists played a role, as did differing ideas about political vs. industrial action; electoral politics; immigration; legislation; union democracy; and, the inclusion of women, black workers, and Asians.

Industrial Workers of the World

IWWWobbliesWobbly
Labor Historian Melvyn Dubofsky traces the birth of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) to the industrial unionism of the Western Federation of Miners, and their years under fire during the Colorado Labor Wars. In 1912, William E. Bohn was able to predict about the two foremost examples of industrial unionism then extant, "It is possible that neither the Industrial Workers of the World nor the Detroit I. W. W. will ever become numerically important. But the principle of industrial unionism is becoming increasingly a power in the land." From its first convention in Chicago in 1905, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) clearly stated its philosophy and its goals: rather than accommodating capitalism, the IWW sought to overthrow it. The IWW's politics in 2007 mirror Burgmann's analysis: the IWW does not proclaim Syndicalism, or Anarchism (despite the large number of anarcho-syndicalist members) but instead advocates Revolutionary Industrial Unionism.
The union combines general unionism with industrial unionism, as it is a general union whose members are further organized within the industry of their employment.

American Railway Union

American Railroad UnionGreat Northern Railway Strikerailway construction business.
The Western Federation of Miners (WFM) was inspired by the industrial unionism example of the American Railway Union (ARU).
The American Railway Union (ARU) was briefly among the largest labor unions of its time and one of the first industrial unions in the United States.

One Big Union (concept)

One Big UnionOne Big Union conceptone big unionists
While the IWW shared the concept of a mass-oriented labor movement—what the IWW would call One Big Union—with the Knights of Labor, the idea of workers having much in common with employers was discarded by the IWW, whose Preamble declares that "the working class and the employing class have nothing in common." The IWW sought to unite the entire working class into One Big Union which would struggle for improved working conditions and wages in the short term, while working to ultimately overthrow capitalism through a general strike, after which the members of the union would manage production.
A simultaneous disenchantment with the perceived weakness of craft unions caused many unions to organize along industrial lines.

Colorado Labor Wars

had been approved in a referendum by 72 percent of Colorado voters1903-1904 Cripple Creek StrikeColorado Labor War
Labor Historian Melvyn Dubofsky traces the birth of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) to the industrial unionism of the Western Federation of Miners, and their years under fire during the Colorado Labor Wars.
Bill Haywood, the WFM's powerful secretary treasurer and second in command, had adopted the industrial unionism philosophy of his mentor, former WFM leader Ed Boyce.

Bill Haywood

Big Bill HaywoodBig Bill" HaywoodWilliam "Big Bill" Haywood
One union leader who closely observed the experiences of the ARU was Big Bill Haywood, who became the powerful secretary treasurer of the Western Federation of Miners (WFM).
Haywood was an advocate of industrial unionism, a labor philosophy that favors organizing all workers in an industry under one union, regardless of the specific trade or skill level; this was in contrast to the craft unions that were prevalent at the time, such as the AFL.

Workers' International Industrial Union

Workers International Industrial UnionDetroit I. W. W.
In 1912, William E. Bohn was able to predict about the two foremost examples of industrial unionism then extant, "It is possible that neither the Industrial Workers of the World nor the Detroit I. W. W. will ever become numerically important. But the principle of industrial unionism is becoming increasingly a power in the land."
The Workers' International Industrial Union (WIIU) was a Revolutionary Industrial Union headquartered in Detroit in 1908 by radical trade unionists closely associated with the Socialist Labor Party of America, headed by Daniel DeLeon.

Strike action

strikestrikeslabor strike
Likewise, in a strike of (for example) coal miners, unionized railroad workers may be required by their contracts to haul "scab" coal. Among the critiques of the AFL were organized scabbery of one union on another, jurisdictional squabbling, an autocratic leadership, and a relationship between union leaders and millionaires in the National Civic Federation that was altogether too cozy.
For example, supporters of industrial unions, which have sought to organize entire workplaces without regard to individual skills, have criticized craft unions for organizing workplaces into separate unions according to skill, a circumstance that makes union strikebreaking more common.

Western Federation of Miners

International Union of Mine, Mill, and Smelter WorkersInternational Union of Mine, Mill and Smelter WorkersMine, Mill and Smelter Workers Union
The Western Federation of Miners (WFM) was inspired by the industrial unionism example of the American Railway Union (ARU). One union leader who closely observed the experiences of the ARU was Big Bill Haywood, who became the powerful secretary treasurer of the Western Federation of Miners (WFM).
The WFM now sought to join with other advocates of industrial unionism and socialism to found a national union federation, the Industrial Workers of the World, in 1905.

Eugene V. Debs

Eugene Victor DebsEugene DebsDebs
According to Eugene V. Debs, "seasoned old unionists" recognized in 1905 that working people could not win with the labor movement they had.
After stepping down as Brotherhood Grand Secretary in 1893, Debs organized one of the first industrial unions in the United States, the American Railway Union (ARU), for unskilled workers.

AFL–CIO

AFL-CIOAmerican Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial OrganizationsAmerican Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations
Unions in the resulting federation, the AFL-CIO, sometimes have a mixture of tendencies.
The NUP's program for reform of the federation included reduction of the central bureaucracy, more money spent on organizing new members rather than on electoral politics, and a restructuring of unions and locals, eliminating some smaller locals and focusing more along the lines of industrial unionism.

Scranton Declaration

When they applied to the AFL for a charter, the Scranton Declaration of 1901 was the AFL's guiding principle.
Craft unionism meant that unions were formed on the basis of the trade practiced by a group of skilled workers, in contrast to industrial unionism.

Socialist Labor Party of America

Socialist LaborSocialist Labor PartySoc-Lab
Some political parties also promote industrial unionism, such as the Socialist Labor Party of America, whose early leader Daniel De Leon formulated a form of industrial unionism as the mechanism of government in the SLP's vision of a socialist society, and the British Labour Party which has relations with affiliated trade unions.
The party advocates "socialist industrial unionism", the belief in a fundamental transformation of society through the combined political and industrial action of the working class organized in industrial unions.

Industrial Workers of the World philosophy and tactics

Colorado coal strike of 1927its philosophyphilosophy and tactics of the IWW
From its first convention in Chicago in 1905, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) clearly stated its philosophy and its goals: rather than accommodating capitalism, the IWW sought to overthrow it.
While the AFL primarily organized workers into their respective crafts, the IWW was created as an industrial union, placing all workers in a factory, mine, mill, or other place of business into the same industrial organization.

Directly Affiliated Local Union

federal unionfederal labor unionsfederal labor union
In competition with the CIO movement, the AFL established Federal Labor Unions (FLUs), which were local industrial unions affiliated directly with the AFL, a concept initially envisioned in the 1886 AFL Constitution.
Although the AFL officially rejected industrial unionism, it could not argue with the success CIO unions were having.

Anarcho-syndicalism

anarcho-syndicalistanarcho-syndicalistsrevolutionary syndicalist
Burgmann saw Australian syndicalism, particularly anarcho-syndicalism, as focused on mythic small shop organisation.
Anarcho-syndicalism, also referred to as revolutionary syndicalism, is a theory of anarchism that views revolutionary industrial unionism or syndicalism as a method for workers in capitalist society to gain control of an economy and thus control influence in broader society.

Syndicalism

syndicalistsyndicalistsrevolutionary syndicalism
The IWW's politics in 2007 mirror Burgmann's analysis: the IWW does not proclaim Syndicalism, or Anarchism (despite the large number of anarcho-syndicalist members) but instead advocates Revolutionary Industrial Unionism.
They apply the label to one big unionists or industrial unionists in North America and Australia, Larkinists in Ireland, and groups that identify as revolutionary industrialists, revolutionary unionists, anarcho-syndicalists, or councilists.

National Union of Railwaymen

RailwaymenAmalgamated Society of Railway ServantsNUR
Industrial organizations prior to 1922 included the National Transport Workers' Federation, the National Union of Railwaymen, and the Miners' Federation of Great Britain.
The NUR was an industrial union founded in 1913 by the merger of the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants (founded 1872), the United Pointsmen and Signalmen's Society (founded 1880) and the General Railway Workers' Union (founded 1889).

National Labor Relations Act of 1935

National Labor Relations ActWagner ActNational Labor Relations Act 1935
This changed in the mid-1930s when, after passage of the National Labor Relations Act, workers began to clamor for union membership.
While the NLRB initially favored plant-wide units, which tacitly favored the CIO's industrial unionism, it retreated to a compromise position several years later under pressure from Congress that allowed craft unions to seek separate representation of smaller groups of workers at the same time that another union was seeking a wall-to-wall unit.

Labor aristocracy

labour aristocracyaristocraticautocratic leadership
Among the critiques of the AFL were organized scabbery of one union on another, jurisdictional squabbling, an autocratic leadership, and a relationship between union leaders and millionaires in the National Civic Federation that was altogether too cozy.

General strike

strikegeneral strikesstriking
The IWW sought to unite the entire working class into One Big Union which would struggle for improved working conditions and wages in the short term, while working to ultimately overthrow capitalism through a general strike, after which the members of the union would manage production.
Technically, the IWW is described as a union that practices revolutionary industrial unionism.