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Sri Lanka: Trades Unions Material

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0101 TU.CE
Held at: Institute of Commonwealth Studies
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Full title: Sri Lanka: Trades Unions Material
Date(s): 1963-1992
Level of description: Collection (Fonds)
Extent: 1 box
Name of creator(s): Institute of Commonwealth Studies
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sri Lanka had been traditionally highly unionised, particularly in the state sector, and the majority of the materials held here date from the period in the 1970s when the influence of organised labour was at its highest. Most of the items originate from umbrella organisations like the Ceylon Workers' Congress (CWC), whose relative militancy prior to 1977 and subsequent support for the United National Party government that came to power that year epitomises the ebbing of union power in the 1980s. Some of the material found here relates to the struggle for worker's rights in the most turbulent sector of the island's economy, tea production.


Scope and content/abstract:

Reports, rules and regulations, manifestos, resolutions, statements, constitutions and addresses issued by the All Ceylon United Workers Congress, the Ceylon Bank Employees' Union, the Ceylon Federation of Labour, the Ceylon Workers' Congress and the Government Clerical Service Union.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
Mostly English, some in Tamil and Sinhalese

System of arrangement:

Alphabetically by union, then in rough chronological order

Conditions governing access:

Open to all for research purposes; access is free for anyone in higher education

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies can usually be obtained - apply to library staff.

Finding aids:

Records at item level on library catalogue (SASCAT)

Archival Information

Archival history:

The Commonwealth Political Parties Materials collection was begun in 1960-61, with special emphasis being placed then, as now, on 'primary material such as party constitutions, policy statements, convention reports and election manifestos.' (ICS, Twelfth Annual Report 1960-1961). Since then, the main method of gathering material has been to appeal directly to political parties throughout the Commonwealth, though contributions from Institute members and staff following visits to relevant countries have been significant.

Immediate source of acquisition:

Institute of Commonwealth Studies

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also Sri Lanka: Political Parties Material (PP.CE) and Sri Lanka: Pressure Groups Material (PG.CE), as well as Political Party, Trades Unions and Pressure Group Materials for other Commonwealth countries and related material in the library's main classified sequence, all held at the ICS.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Description compiled by Daniel Millum, Political Archives Project Officer at the Institutes of Commonwealth and Latin American Studies.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Created 22/09/2004 AIM25

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