The Networking of the Protest: Co-operation with labour unions


The Bildungsstreik of Saarland is currently working on a project
which aims at bringing students, pupils and apprentices together.
IG Metall (a labour union in Germany) offered the platform, namely
a demonstration in the course of their campaign in which they call
attention to the problems of apprentices. As an introduction I present
the current state of planning and co-operation of this project. The
following discussion may elaborate anything that deals with the pro-
ject and the general outlook of the co-operation with labour unions.

Recollection of Discussion

  • reflection on the structure of popular labour unions: hierarchical, members have little influence on negotiations/ decision making
  • anarcho-syndicalism (FAU in Germany, CNT in France, …): the grass-roots approach to organisation is more akin to the principles of the current student movement
  • general outlook on the co-operation with labour unions, political parties and other groups:
    -the autonomy of the activist-collective should be maintained and proclaimed with a clear statement
    -any misuse of the collectives statements and demands for a political groups/ labour unions own purposes should be avoided (e.g. in debates)


  • co-operation (e.g. organisation of a demonstration) is useful in order to reach more people with the groups messages
  • ideologically unlike (hierarchical) groups can also have members who are in line with the collectives principles and thus respect the autonomy
  • the collective itself should be open to anyone who agrees with the principles, but the obtrusion with political parties and unions charters is to be avoided (no promotion)