The Impact of the Employment Relations Act 2000 on Collective Bargaining


  • Brett Lineham Department of Labour
  • Louise Fawthorpe Department of Labour
  • Boaz Shulruf Department of Labour
  • Stephen Blumenfeld Department of Labour
  • Roopali Johri Department of Labour



This study carried out by the Department of Labour in 2007/08 aims to assess whether there have been any significant changes in the coverage of collective bargaining that can be attributed to the Employment Relations Act 2000. The research draws on administrative data relating to union membership and collective bargaining coverage, as well as qualitative data from employers, employees, union representatives and other employment relations stakeholders. The research shows that collective bargaining has yet to regain pre Employment Relations Act levels. Collective bargaining remains concentrated in the public sector, with low density in the private sector. The study concludes that the effects of the Act on collective bargaining are chiefly observed in the recovery of collective bargaining in the public sector, and the continued decline (in general) in the private sector. The research offers no indications that these patterns will change.


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Author Biography

Stephen Blumenfeld, Department of Labour