Unions affiliated to the Swedish LO confederation have lost almost ten percent of their members during the past year. At the LO Congress, which starts on 31 May, proposals to intensify recruitment efforts will be high on the agenda.
Sweden has one of the highest union densities in the world, thanks in part to the coupling of unemployment insurance to union membership. However, the centre-right government has reformed unemployment insurance. Both LO and TCO - the confederation of unions of professionals - have suffered substantial membership losses in 2007.
In order to turn the tide, LO proposes to increase recruitment activities, especially directed at young workers. It also wants to organise temporary workers and to improve unemployment insurance. Other proposals deal with the right to work fulltime, the right to strike and climate change.
Some 1,500 people are expected to attend the LO Congress, among them 500 journalists and 60 foreign guests.
LO, the Local