Case Study Summary

Climate Action in the Workplace: Trade UnionTraining for Health, Safety and Activism

Regional Hub: Australasia
Country: Australia
Action for Climate Empowerment Element: Training

The Climate Action for Unionists course is an innovative CCE initiative that uses a focus on workplace health and safety as a lever for worker-centred climate action. The course trains a diverse cohort of workers from the Australian union movement. Run by the peak union body in Australia, the course provides training across a wide range of industrial and occupational settings. The course contrasts with the usual siloed and top-down approach of workforce training and moves beyond the usual focus on workplaces in climate change discussions. 

In this case study, two researchers from La Trobe University in Australia, in collaboration with the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU), seek to advance worker-centred CCE through workplace training for climate mitigation and adaptation. Thus, the project aims to understand how workers’ education provides the basis for workplace action and enables more just climate action. The study supports just climate action by empowering workers so that climate action addresses their needs and circumstances, not just those of their employers. This research entails data collection through surveys and interviews.

The study’s findings will contribute to addressing the need for CCE for people who may have completed their formal education and have limited opportunities for it. This case study will also inform improvements to the Climate Action for Unionists course, its delivery, and the quality of climate change education.

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