In recent weeks, a new nationwide union has been established for workers in the fast food and retail sectors. The Retail and Fast Food Workers Union (RAFFWU) has been set up to offer an alternative to the right-wing Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers Association (SDA).
UNITE has been working with the founders of RAFFWU for many years and we wholeheartedly support its establishment. With more resources, and a nationwide reach, RAFFWU is well placed to play a progressive role helping to reintroduce the ideas of fighting unionism into the sector.
With that being the case, UNITE has decided to change the character of our organisation. As of January 1, 2017, we will no longer be providing specific representation to members (with the exception of existing cases) and we will instead operate as a young workers campaign group.
UNITE members and activists will work within RAFFWU, but we will also consider launching our own independent campaigns in the future. We hope to bring our experience and fighting ideas to RAFFWU and to play a constructive role in helping to get this new union off the ground.
We encourage all workers in the fast food and retail sectors to join RAFFWU and to help us build a union that is truly capable of fighting against wealth inequality and the super exploitation of young people in Australia.