Campaign Template 2 – Planning A Campaign

Consider This…

When planning a campaign there a number of questions that should be asked before mapping out a strategy.

Defining what is wrong and who is affected by it is the first step. Swift action is needed where workers’ lives or health are at risk and in some circumstances there may not be time to run a campaign. By conducting a risk assessment workers can determine how urgently the problem needs to be fixed and whether work should cease immediately in all or parts of the worksite.


Action List


  • Conduct a risk assessment to work out how urgently the problem must be fixed and what would be the consequences if an incident did occur.
  • Define the problem and identify the person with the authority to fix it.
  • Refer to the relevant sections of the OHS Act and Regulations to find out what the employer’s responsibilities are and what are the workers’ rights.
  • Map your workplace to identify who works where and who is directly affected.
  • Develop a communication strategy to let people know what is going on, eg. every union member agrees to talk to five other colleagues.
  • Map out a step-by-step campaign timeline that shows who will be involved in each stage of the campaign, and includes the dates of any meetings, actions or deadlines.
  • Choose actions that will involve as many people as possible and that will put direct pressure on management to fix the problem.
  • Decide what media to involve and how the workers want to go about it. Contact your union for assistance with developing a media strategy that works for everyone.
  • Take action and make it fun. Take lots of photos and send them to any media who cannot make it on the day.
  • Celebrate your win! By acknowledging everyone’s role in the campaign, what worked and what the participants got out of it, union members get to see the power of united action at work.


Case Studies

During the Mid West nurses campaign surveys were used to identify the top occupational health and safety issues most commonly faced by people working in their industry. The Labor Council of NSW ran OHS workshops which taught safety_reps how to conduct risk assessments and gave them the chance to talk about the safety issues that concerned them the most. Regional safety_reps contacted their local press.

The Rail, Tram and Bus Union’s campaign revolved around the problem of workers not having warm headgear in cold weather. The solution was for management to let bus drivers wear beanies at work. By wearing outrageous beanies at the same time as stories about their plight were being run in the media, the workers put direct pressure of management to fix the problem. Union members were told that if management attempted to discipline them for wearing the beanies, the RTBU would exercise its right under the Dispute Settlement Procedures.

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Campaign Template 2 – Planning A Campaign

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